The Federal Government has on Friday kicked against the United Nation (UN) Rapporteur report against Nigeria as violence saying the claims were disappointing. The federal government revealed that some of the displaced people in the country was a result of ethnic and communal clashes contrary to her claim.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu made this statement saying the report ignored the victims of ethnic clashes.
Partly his statement reads, “We have read press reports of the UN rapporteur on violence in Nigeria. While we agree that the violence in Nigeria, or in any country, is a major concern and that is always accompanied by rippling effects, we are disappointed that the rapporteur was silent on intra-group violence.
Citing, Benue, Taraba, Cross River States and many other parts of the country, saying the casualties in those areas are the direct consequences of intra-group, inter-group and community violence.
He added that though there is no doubt violence between farmers and herders, which is a perennial problem in our history as a country has cropped up in recent time, however, the vigour with which the authorities handled the matter have restored calmness into those communities.
“Therefore, we are saddened that the rapporteur either deliberately or through oversight failed to include intra-ethnic conflicts and cattle rustling as key elements in herder/farmer conflicts. In Benue State, for instance, the Tiv/Jukun conflict and kidnapping is a major problem.
According to Garba Shehu, Ignoring the salient issues will not help to solve the problem. If you are going to address violence and the general insecurity in Nigeria, collective incidences from all part should form part of the narrative.
However, failing to address such will paint the Federal Government in a bad light as inept, but national peace and security is community-based and collective responsibility.
Arrests, prosecution and locking people up are only small parts of National Security and Safety strategy as sending people to jail has over the time proved not to be the most effective means of correcting anomaly.
Meanwhile, he frowned at the report that only scratches the surface of the subject then ends up blaming the government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari. The UN representative needs to be truthful and even-handed in her assignment.”