Nigeria’s main opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has described President Muhammadu Buhari’s remark that the 90% of the victims Boko Haram are Muslims as divisive statement capable of endangering peace in the land.
Buhari had said:
“It is the reality that some 90 per cent of all Boko Haram’s victims have been Muslims. They include a copycat abduction of over 100 Muslim schoolgirls, along with their single Christian classmate; shootings inside mosques, and the murder of two prominent Imams.”
However, in its official reaction, PDP described as highly insensitive that President Buhari “could attempt to rationalize the failure of his administration to end the insurgency by stating that 90 per cent of those killed by terrorists are members of a particular religion.”
In a statement issued by the national publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP said “the killing of any compatriot, anywhere by terrorists or bandits, irrespective of religion, ethnicity or class, can never be rationalized under any guise whatsoever.
“The party says Mr President’s disturbing statement shows that the Buhari Presidency and the All Progressives Congress, APC attach no value to the lives of Nigerians as well as further exposes their manifest lack of capacity and commitment to effectively tackle the worsened security situation under President Buhari’s watch.
“Our party holds that for President Buhari, a commander-in-chief, who promised to fight from the fronts and now holds all the paraphernalia of power; and on whose shoulders the security of the nation rests, to make such a statement leaves no one in doubt that the Buhari Presidency has reached its wits end, exhausted its propaganda and has no solutions to offer.
“It is instructive for the Buhari Presidency to note that rather than engaging in a lame attempt at rationalizing failure, the expectation of Nigerians is for it to take decisive steps, track down and vanquish terrorists, who resurged in our country after Mr President took over as Commander-in-Chief. “More distressing is that Mr President’s divisive comment is coming at a time when all well-meaning Nigerians, irrespective of religion, partisan and sectional interests, are rallying together following calls by patriotic individuals and groups, particularly the PDP, to find a solution for the worsened security challenges under the APC administration.
“President Buhari and the APC must know that every life is precious, irrespective of religion and that this obnoxious body count as a rationalization for failure is completely unacceptable. “The PDP notes that with such dismal attitude Nigerians have lost all confidence in the commitment of the APC administration to find a solution to security challenges under its watch. “The party, therefore, counsels President Buhari to immediately apologize for his comments, accept failure, rejig his security high command and engage more competent hands to effectively tackle the security challenges.
“Indeed, what Nigerians want to hear from President Buhari is the apprehension and prosecution of perpetrators of mass killings in Benue, Plateau, Kogi, Niger, Yobe, Adamawa, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina and other states of the nation where communities where pillaged under his watch.”