The Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Rep. Ado Doguwa (APC-Kano) said on Thursday that it was time Nigerians were allowed to bear arms to defend themselves.
“With all sense of responsibility, I think Nigerians at this moment should be allowed to bear arms.
“Nigerians must be allowed to take arms in defence of their innocent souls and to defend their hard-earned resources and property.
“Nigeria should not fail. Let Nigerians organise themselves in the form of civil defence and defend their innocent souls,’’ he said.
Doguwa was contributing to a motion moved by Rep. Shehu Balarabe (APC-Kaduna) in plenary on the need to curtail increasing banditry in Brinin Giwa Federal Constituency in Kaduna State.
“When killing and kidnapping continue like this on daily basis, those of us who are representatives of government become speechless in the discharge of our duties to defend the actions of government.
“This is a report from one local government out of the 774 local governments in the country.
“The case of Giwa is not just what happened last week; it has been engulfed in crisis, banditry and killings in the past three years.
“Giwa is in Kaduna State where security agencies are most represented in the north, why should these things continue to happen?
“Government and officials of government have to rise to their responsibilities and call a spade, a spade; if it is funding, we all know we do not have any challenge funding the security agencies,’’ he said.
Moving the motion earlier, Rep. Balarabe said that Brinin Giwa Local Government Area of Kaduna State had been ravaged by terrorists who killed, kidnapped, raped, robbed and destroyed lives and property.
He said between March 24 and March 28, there were series of attacks in the area in which no fewer than 178 people were killed, 136 persons were abducted, 10,463 peoples displaced and more than 250,000 houses, burnt.
The lawmaker said that properties such as vehicles, motorcycles and animals worth millions of Naira were destroyed.
He said that there was no response from security agencies during the attacks and that the displaced persons were now taking shelter in public schools.
“We have a helipad in the area so that if there is any attack, it will assist the Air Force to rapidly respond. When we have such aggressions, we call the military and state authorities.
“Most of the times, the Air Force aircraft will come, it will fly left, right and centre as if we are celebrating Nigeria’s Independence Day, but it will never land to attack the bandits. Never,’’ he said.
In his contribution, Rep. Ahmed Nasril (APC-Kano) said that the National Security Adviser (NSA) should resign from office following the insecurity in the country.
He said that the NSA that oversees the security agencies had been in office for seven years and not much success had been recorded.
The lawmaker said that traveling either by road, rail or water is not safe, noting that not even the airports are safe.
According to him, Nigerians are not safe even in their homes.
“We send our children to school they are kidnapped; only yesterday somebody was kidnapped from a hospital,’’ he lamented.
Rep. Ahmed Jaha (APC-Borno) noted that in 2021 the parliament budgeted N460 billion for the Nigerian Army alone, out of which only N29 billion was for capital expenditure, the remaining was for recurrent expenditure.
He said in 2022, parliament budgeted N571 billion for the Nigerian Army alone, out of which only N37 billion is capital expenditure and the balance for recurrent expenditure.
“The truth of the matter is security in Nigeria has become a cash-cow business,’’ he said.
Rep. Dachung Bagos (PDP-Plateau), in his contribution, said that the House should suspend further releases of funds to security agencies.
According to him, the security agencies have to account for the monies they have already collected over the years.
The House urged the Inspector-General of Police to deploy police special teams to Giwa and Birnin Local Government Areas of Kaduna State to intensify operations against bandits.
It called on the Chief of Army Staff and the Chief of Air Staff to intensify operations to restore law and order.
The lawmakers called on the Federal Government to set up Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps in the area to reduce the difficulties faced by victims.
They urged the Federal Government to implement the resolutions of the security summit convened by the House in 2021.
In his ruling, the Deputy Speaker of the House, Rep. Ahmed Wase urged all members to improve on their oversight functions and ensure that all agencies of government met the expectations of Nigerians.