By Gbenga Omokhunu, Abuja
Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) on Friday questioned the Niger State government’s negotiation with bandits that kidnapped 27 students and three teachers.
The incidents occurred last Wednesday at Government Science College, Kagara in Rafi Local Government Area.
Reacting to the development while briefing journalists on the state of the nation in Abuja, HURIWA’s national coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, said any government or person that negotiates with bandits is also a terrorist.
The Nation had reported Niger Governor, Abubakar Sani-Bello on Friday dispelled rumour that 27 students and 3 teachers abducted on Wednesday morniat Government Science College, Kagara have been released.
He said the government was in last stage of negotiations with the bandits, promising the victims would be released soon.
Onwubiko said no governor has the right to negotiate with terrorists, adding that: “If you negotiate with a terrorist you are a terrorist. Any governor who negotiates with terrorists is a terrorist and he should be seen as a terrorist.
“And the people of this country must make efforts to approach the high commissions, embassies in Nigeria.
“They should approach international organisations, communities to tell them that look, we have terrorists governing some geographical space in this country.
‘’For anybody to begin to defend the indefensible positions of negotiating with a terrorist, there is a problem.
“It means the person is an associate and a sympathizer of terrorism and when you sympathise with terrorism, who are you? You are a terrorist. It is completely unacceptable. It doesn’t matter if you are APC or PDP or whatever you are”.
He called for the resignation of Sani-Bello if he has no solution to the problem instead of negotiating with bandits.
Onwubiko said: “If you do not have solution to criminality in your state then you resign and allow somebody who has a better solution on how to resolve the problem”.
He said the northern elites have an agenda to setup an amnesty programme for bandits, adding that: “Let me tell you why you have all this kind of problems in the north.
“There is a movement currently and plan by some people for government to setup an amnesty programme for bandits. That is just the agenda they have among the elites in the north, which they don’t want to tell anybody.
“Ask yourself, why is the entire security architecture of this country is controlled by the north? You can see what is happening now, Gumi is the one negotiating for government.
“The northern elites are comparing what happened in the Niger Delta to the terrorists in the north.
“How can you justify that a group of boys will buy weapons and invade a community and begin to kill and kidnap children?
“These children they are killing are northerners. They are just wasting them. And a bunch of people are being settled”.
He hailed Kaduna Governor, Nasiru El’Rufai for not supporting negotiations with bandits.
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