It was with a deep sense of shock that the All Nigeria Peoples Party [ANPP] received the sad and jolting news of the mindless massacre of more than forty students of three higher institutions in Mubi, the commercial nerve centre of Adamawa State, last week, on the same fateful day that our great nation marked her fifty-second anniversary as an independent country, by yet-to-be identified gunmen. It is a sad statement on the evolution of our higher education; and we vehemently condemn such wicked, vicious and inhuman act. It is disheartening that actions that should belong only to the imaginations of fiction writers and movie producers have found their way to the streets of our great nation.
Bearing in mind that the gunmen invaded the students’ hostels in a town under curfew disguised in military uniform, we are reminded of the fundamental breach impersonation of security personnel could cause in a nation. Anywhere in the world, government-issue uniforms and equipment for military and paramilitary personnel are almost sacrosanct. It is high time that the Nigerian security sector woke up to the reality that criminal elements are camouflaging with their exclusive identity marks to unleash mayhem on innocent citizens.
Early this year, the 14 Brigade of the Nigerian Army arrested illegal military and paramilitary uniforms dealers in Nsulu market, Aba, the commercial hub of Abia State. The 14 Brigade’s Army Public Relations [APR] officer, Lieutenant Obabisi Olalekan Ayeni, explained then that one of the suspects confirmed they have been in the illegal business for over three years, also that ‘‘it is believed they are supplying these items to suspected armed robbers, kidnappers and political thugs who usually impersonate security agencies.’’
Therefore, while we commiserate with the family and friends of the victims of the horrible manslaughter, our great party, the ANPP, calls on the nation’s security operatives to urgently muster efforts at flushing out impersonators, both within its ranks and those hiding among the civilians, and also to concentrate on securing our national borders. We also suggest that peculiar distinguishing features be introduced to the regalia of the military and paramilitary with proper enlightenment on the masses on how to recognize genuine government-issue insignia. As a party, we believe it is the duty of the government to make its people feel secure in their own country. Moreover, the citizens of this great nation are entitled to feel the positive effects of the huge money apportioned for security in this year’s national budget.
Hon Emma Eneukwu
National Publicity Secretary