A cleric, Professor Sabit Ariyo Olagoke, has called on governments at all levels to address the problem of the masses just as he commended the Federal Government for its proposal to introduce palliatives to cushion the adverse effects of removal of petroleum subsidy.
Olagoke, who is Founder of Shafaudeen In Islam gave the charge while speaking on “Security Challenges and Sustainable Peace: The Way Forward” at Oodua News Lecture and Award Ceremony which took place at NUJ Press Centre, Ibadan.
He warned on the repercussion of government neglect of the interest of the masses adding that the proposed palliative to cushion the effect of oil subsidy removal was a welcome step if saboteurs would allow it to work.
His words: “when government and their agents fail to discharge their duties and refused to follow due process, people’s agitation for their rights to have access to functional infrastructures and provision of basic amenities may generate polity heat, leading to insurgence, pipeline vandalism, kidnapping and other vices”.
He pointed out that terrorism in the land has led to various loss of lives and properties and sacrileges of internal displacement of people with attendant rehabilitation problems.
He suggested that government activities must be strategic to successfully revolve around the matrix mix of “provision of basic amenities to promote people’s satisfaction and contentment to promote sustainable peace through the fundamental needs of man – shelter security, food security and clothing; security, economic measure of prosperity and poverty alleviation challenge through equitable distribution of resources.
Olagoke pointed out that only promotion of institutional discipline and zero tolerance to corruption, justice and equity can avail the nation to have food security, shelter, security and clothing security upon which sustainable peace stands.
According to him, “The present state of terrorism, Fulani herdsmen/farmer skirmishes, ethnic militancy must be addressed through appropriate conflict resolution formula by the state and federal governments to generate a conducive atmosphere for growth and development upon which the present efforts effect positive change is duly rested.
“However, we are all stakeholders on the issue of security challenges and sustainable peace in Nigeria to move the nation forward”, he pointed out.
On the role of religious leaders, he called on them to “run a functional religious system whereby the scriptures are internalised to the point of ease of application by intuition. The scriptures agree on peace initiatives as divine instruction to regulate social activities, and that taught knowledge must be acquired to promote the core values of right and acceptable personality – integrity, positive mental attitude for appropriate relocation, self esteem and positive self image.
Also, an Associate Professor of Comparative Politics, Department of Political Science, University of Ilorin, Gbade Ojo lamented that Nigeria eminently qualifies to be described as a weak state, adding that “laws are made but either not implemented or selectively executed. Any society with a culture of impunity is a problem.
“For instance, recently in Enugu State, unknown gunmen mowed down a lot of innocent citizens in cold blood. No single arrest has been made. Transferring the state commissioner of Police in Enugu for professional negligence is far from being sufficient for the heinous crime perpetrated by the criminal blocs”, he added.