Spate of Insecurity: Reps Gagdi raises voice on behalf of constituents in a world press conference
BEING TEXT OF A PRESS CONFERENCE ADDRESSED BY RT.
HON. YUSUF ADAMU GAGDI, MEMBER REPRESENTING
PANKSHIN/KANKE/KANAM FEDERAL CONSTITUENCY IN THE
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, AND CHAIRMAN OF THE
HOUSE COMMITTEE ON NIGERIAN NAVY, ON THURSDAY,
23RD JANUARY, 2020 AT THE NUJ PRESS CENTER, JOS.
With a heavy heart, I address you this morning concerning the
deplorable state of security in our dear country and its
devastating consequences on the lives and property of the
entire citizenry, with particular reference to my constituency
and Plateau state as a whole, which if not checked, will
threaten the harmonious coexistence of faiths and ethnic
diversities in the state.
We woke up in the morning of Tuesday, 21st January, 2020 to
the gory video of the gruesome execution of Daciya Ropvil
Dalep, my Constituent, and a 200 level Biology/Education
student of University of Maiduguri, who was abducted on the
9th of January 2020 by Boko Haram insurgents on his way to
school from Jos.
I want to use this medium to extend my sincerest condolences
to his immediate family, Pankshin/Kànke/Kanam Federal
Constituency, Mupun nation and to the government and people
of Plateau State over this tragic incidence. I pray God almighty
to grant the immediate family of the deceased the fortitude to
bear this painful lost.
This unfortunate incident occurred when we were exploring
lobbying mechanisms for Federal and State Government’s
intervention for the release of one Bashir Abdulhamid, a native
of Kanam LGA of Plateau State, and also my constituent, who
was abducted by Boko Haram insurgents on 4th December,
2019 at Gambu, while on his way to Maiduguri to take polio
specimen for experimentation. Bashir is an adhoc staff of the
World Health Organization, who is still being held in Boko
These two unfortunate incidences involving my constituents
within the span of one month has left me devastated,
wondering if the efforts of the federal government in curbing
the menace of terrorism in the country is yielding the desired
Not long ago, a similar video of the gory killing of two Plateau
citizens from Mangu local government area was released by
the insurgents with similar message of their intention to
continually abduct and kill in like manner Christian citizens of
Plateau State. Two other constituents of mine were also
ambushed and killed along Maiduguri-Damaturu road by Boko
Haram on 23rd December, 2019. They are Dauda Gojang
Gaskiya of Kazuk village and Joseph Wutuk of Amper village,
both in Kanke LGA. May their souls rest in peace with the lord,
As the representative of the good people of Pankshin, Kanke
and Kanam Local Government Areas in National Assembly, I
found this act of the Boko Haram insurgents as not only
condemnable but it is devilish. It is a bad tone that is capable
of igniting religious conflagration between Muslims and
Christians citizens of Plateau state and Nigeria as a country.
While I challenge the federal government to go beyond lip
service to guarantee the safety of Nigerians anywhere within
the country, I passionately appeal to the Executive Governor of
Plateau State to, as a matter of urgency, set up a machinery in
motion by considering the appointment of a delegation to visit
the executive Governor of Borno State and the Vice Chancellor
of the University of Maiduguri to elicit a convincing plan of
action by the government of the state and the school
management, of guaranteeing the safety of Christian Plateau
students studying in the state. Otherwise, I would strongly
advocate that negotiations with JAMB, University of Jos and
Plateau State University Bokkos as well as other institutions
within the north central be held with the view to securing
admission for them outside the northeast, where activities of
the insurgents is most prevalent.
This is because, since the insurgents have made it
categorically clear that they are looking out for Christian
citizens of Plateau State to kill, the last could not have been
heard of such gruesome murder of our dear Plateau brothers
and sisters. Only the living go to school, we cannot afford to
continue to loose our loved ones in their prime to the
nefarious activities of those daredevils.
Early last month, one Jennifer, a native of Bokkos LGA and
aide worker with an international organization was taken
captive by the Boko Haram terrorists. It took the swift
intervention of Governor Lalong and rapid response of the
federal government to have the lady released after almost a
month in their dungeon. It appears the terrorists are now
focusing on Plateau citizens as target of a particular sinister
agenda, which is to put the country in a religious disharmony.
As the chairman of the House committee on Nigerian Navy
and member of most of the security related committees of the
house, I am in a vintage position to speak on the commitment
of the 9th National Assembly towards the security of lives and
property of Nigerians, going by budgetary allocations to the
various military, paramilitary and other security agencies in the
country. The committees put in place by the Speaker, Rt Hon
Femi Gbajabiamila to look into the activities of non-
governmental Organizations and other security related issues
is a clear testimony to that.
But the festering spate of insurgency in the country leaves one
We must as a people give our utmost respect to our fallen
heroes who had laid down their lives in defense of the
territorial integrity of our nation, the zeal and commitment of
the military personnel in the fight against insurgency can better
be appreciated by the number of our soldiers who are killed
daily in confrontations with the terrorists.
While I do not want to believe that the insurgents are better
equipped than military forces, I must admit that dearth of
sophisticated technology and weaponry to prosecute the war
against terrorism as well as international conspiracies has
caused the insurgency to fester.
This brings to fore the begging question why the
technologically advanced nations of the world are reluctant in
allowing the Nigerian military have access to modern and
suffisticated military hardwares and other technological
platforms that will help quell the insurgency.
Even the recent transaction to acquire Super Tucano fighter
jets, is yet to come to fruition as the jets are yet to be
delivered to the federal government of Nigeria. I am privy to
the terms of the transaction, and the nondelivery of those
fighter jets has obviously hampered the success of the fight
against insurgents. But why?
It is on record how the insurgents are ambushing our military
forces due to lack of modern military hardwares. why?
These are the questions I want to assure you that I will work
together with other National Assembly members from Plateau
with our other colleagues to challenge the Federal
Government to provide answers to.
Just like most of my colleagues from the National Assembly
and particularly those from the Northeast, I am wary of the
activities of some international nongovernmental
organizations operating in the northeast. Federal government
must widen its intelligence network to identify the source of
funding of the activities of the insurgents, the source of their
firearms, the source of their petroleum products to power their
vehicles and sundry other supplies to the insurgents in their
hideouts. The biggest problem is their source of intelligence
and how they gather information regarding the movements
and plans of the military forces.
Mr President, and by extension, the federal government of
Nigeria must come out and make a definite diplomatic
statement regarding the activities of international
nongovernmental organizations operating in the northeast and
Nigeria as a whole. Some of them have direct links with the
insurgents and are secretly aiding their heinous activities
through financial and logistics support.
I want to appeal to my fellow Plateau citizens that even in the
face of this needless persecution and threat to our harmonious
existence, let us not be divided by the antics of the insurgents.
Their mission is to set the nation on fire by any diabolical
means. They have not spared the Muslim citizens either, but
making inflammatory comments in videos while executing
Christian victims from Plateau state, is not only provocative
but it is satanic.
Let us collectively mourn our loss, and refuse to be pitched
against one another on the pretext of religious or ethnic
differences. This is one sermon I will never get tired of
preaching. We should be more concerned about what unites
us, rather than what divides us. I would also caution politicians
not to try to make political gains out of this tragedy, as such
would be callous and inhuman. Let us guide our utterances
and actions in this period of mourning.
Thank you for listening