‘Hunting for ESN staff in the South East as bandits sack northern villages,’ says a former ECOWAS speaker.

Senator Mao Ohuabunwa, former Speaker of the ECOWAS Parliament, has questioned the logic of security forces searching for alleged members of the Eastern Security Network, ESN, in the South East while bandits and militants sack villages in the North and take over their ancestral land almost unopposed.

Senator Ohuabunwa, speaking after media reports and confirmations from some Northern governors that terrorists have now taken over several towns in the area, seizing people’s wives, said that “Nigeria is cruising on a highway to abbys.”

He said that the search for alleged ESN staff who are fighting the invasion of Eastern communities by bandits and Killer herdsmen as bandits on a killing spree occupy territories poses some interesting questions.

The former Speaker of the House of Representatives cautioned that if the current security situation in the country is not treated properly, it could lead to civil strife in Nigeria.

Senator Ohuabunwa, who strongly denounced attacks on security formations in the region, cautioned that indiscriminate arrests of alleged sponsors of unknown gunmen “without due investigation” may cause innocent people to suffer for what they don’t know.

He urged members of the National Assembly to exercise their legislative oversight duties and call the security forces to order.

According to Ohuabunwa, the use of undue force against nonviolent agitators while being too mild on actual and globally recognised terrorists casts a dark cloud over Nigeria’s global picture.

” It doesn’t make sense to go after those protecting their territory from jihadists while being lenient on the same murderers who are decimating aboriginal populations and taking over their property.

“It is not ideal for our global perception for Nigeria to be seen using deodorant against jihadists while using a sledgehammer on fellow citizens.”

Senator Ohuabunwa urged South East governors and political leaders to avoid living in ignorance about the zone’s security reality and the dire consequences for Ndigbo’s future and survival.

He said that remaining quiet in the face of troubling developments is a sign of cowardice, which is not a characteristic that any decent leader should possess.

Ohuabunwa, who served Abia North in the eighth senate, reiterated his demand for power devolution and the establishment of state or regional police, which he said will be the panacea to the country’s growing insecurity.

He also recommended that a national dialogue with all ethnic nationalities in the country be convened immediately to brainstorm on the way forward, warning that if the present crisis is left to fester, Nigeria will not last for long.

“Unless we all rise and nip it in the bud now, we will all be swallowed by the dark cloud,” he cautioned.

Senator Ohuabunwa has urged South East Governors to convene a security summit urgently to discuss ways to curb the growing tide of insecurity in the region in the absence of a national dialogue.

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