Insecurity: Reps Debate Foreign Mercenaries Option

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The House of Representatives resolved on Wednesday to meet with President Bola Tinubu to address the worsening insecurity in Nigeria. During the plenary, there was a heated debate on whether to hire foreign mercenaries to combat non-state actors holding the nation hostage.

The House considered and adopted a motion of urgent public importance moved by Abdullahi Dabai, representing Bakori/Danja Federal Constituency of Katsina State. Dabai highlighted the dire situation in his constituency, where constant bandit attacks have left families in fear, with many losing loved ones, livelihoods, and homes. He emphasized the psychological trauma on survivors and the exacerbation of the crisis due to kidnappings.

Dabai cited a recent attack on May 25, 2024, in Unguwar Lamido, Guga Ward, Bakori Local Government Area, where eight individuals were killed, 100 cattle and sheep were stolen, and 26 people were murdered in Gidan Kare near Lamido. He also mentioned the abduction of two relatives of Katsina State House of Assembly member Shamsudden Dabai during the Sallah celebration, who remain in captivity.

Ahmad Jaha, representing Damboa/Gwoza/Chibok Federal Constituency in Borno State, advocated for hiring foreign mercenaries, noting that even advanced nations like Ukraine and Russia use external forces to combat security threats. He argued that despite the best efforts of Nigerian security agencies, additional help could be beneficial.

However, Abbas Adigun, representing Ibadan North-East/Ibadan South-East, Oyo State, disagreed. He suggested re-engaging young military officers retired during Muhammadu Buhari’s presidency to tackle the bandit issue, arguing that these individuals are capable of resolving the crisis.

Miriam Onuoha, representing Onuimo/Okigwe/Isiala Mbano Federal Constituency in Imo State, called for rebuilding infrastructure destroyed by non-state actors. Bamidele Salam, a PDP lawmaker representing Ede North/Ede South/Ejigbo Federal Constituency in Osun State, urged the government to focus on improving access to education and poverty alleviation, highlighting the correlation between lack of education, poverty, and insecurity.

Following the debate, the House resolved to meet with the President to find solutions to the insecurity challenges and urged police authorities to allocate funds to repair damaged security assets across the country.

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