A former Vice President and Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has urged the Federal Government to increase funding for the military.
He also called for an end to the killings of soldiers participating in the fight against Boko Haram in the northeastern part of the country.
Atiku in a statement said, “It is unacceptable that terrorists and criminals are frequently better equipped than members of our armed forces. It is the duty of the political elite to put aside any political differences and take a United stand to put an end to this.
“The increasing deaths of our servicemen at the hand of terrorists and criminals, especially in the Northeast and Middle Belt, is a clear sign that our troops need to be better funded and better equipped.
“It is true that funds are scarce, but this is an emergency and if we do not take care of an emergency, it becomes a crisis which can lead to a total breakdown of law and order – anarchy in essence.
“I have been travelling all over Nigeria and I meet with both Muslim and Christian clerics who tell me that in the Northeast and Middle Belt, they now officiate over more funerals than they do marriages and child dedications. This is heartbreaking and we must do something immediately to change the situation”, he added.
The Presidential Candidate appealed to the Federal Government to review its policy of releasing so-called ‘repentant’ terrorists.
He said, “To think that the government can de-radicalise these individuals in so short a time is wishful thinking. Many people, myself included, think that the upsurge in terror activities coming after the release of such detainees, is not coincidental.
“Finally, I urge the National Assembly to suo moto, take action to appropriate funds for our military on a fast-track basis. These are desperate times for Nigeria and desperate times call for dedication to duty of all concerned”.
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