Gap between haves, have-not scares Senators
Senator Chukwuka Utazi has called for an urgent need to bridge the gap between the haves and the have-not in Nigeria to nip in the bud the seeds of a looming violent revolution.
TheNewsGuru (TNG) reports the Senator, representing Enugu North Senatorial District, made the call with a motion during plenary session of the Senate on Wednesday.
In the motion, the Enugu lawmaker expressed fears that Nigeria’s poor masses may ignite a revolution against the rich if recent happenings in the country were anything to go by.
He stressed that the audacious kidnappings and upsurge in banditry by criminal elements against well-meaning Nigerians which have defied all known security measures were testamentary to his fears.
His motion “Observes with alarm the rapacious daredevilry among the young people in Nigeria and the sharp upsurge in violent crimes especially kidnapping, arm robbery and unprovoked attacks on innocent persons across the whole landscape of Nigeria”
Utazi pointed out that no Nigeria highway in any part of the zone was safe any longer, noting that the Nigerian elite have abandoned driving on roads to travelling by train.
Describing the challenge as multifarious, he observed that North-Central Nigeria known for farming is now under the grip of killer herders, a situation he warned would lead to famine.
“Today, the chicken has returned home to roost; the downtrodden are revolting,” Utazi insisted.
In his contribution, Senator Shehu Sani decried the absence of priority for the poor masses in government programmes, stating that as parliamentarians, there was pressure from the poor people on them.
Sani noted that the socio-economic pattern of Nigeria was that of master-servant relationship which he said cannot work again.
He called for a conscious intervention to better the life of poor Nigerians.
The Senate Leader, Ahmed Lawan said the Senate could quickly introduce the desired laws despite time constraints.
“Though, we have three weeks to go, we can do something particularly that it was common knowledge to all of us that we witnessed the condition of Nigerians when we went on campaign,” he said.
On his part, Ben Murray Bruce said, “in finding solution to the menace, the country has to grow its economic indices by 15% for the next 30 years to employ everybody.”
He expressed disappointment that government was not investing in education enough, noting that, “instead of buying books, they were buying bullets for the teeming youths.”
The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu called for proper statistics and concrete steps by the government to tackle unemployment in Nigeria.
On his part, Senate President Bukola Saraki thanked his colleagues for their contributions, particularly Senator Utazi for the very important motion.
He reiterated the need to separate the maintenance of Law and Order from the issue of poverty.
“It cannot be an excuse that as a Nation, no matter how bad it is we must be able to maintain Law and Order, and that is why it is important that we as parliament give all the support that is necessary to all the security agencies and all government policies on security to see that we maintain Law and Order.
“It is key and we must address it. Bills that need to be passed to strengthen whether it is the Police, their responsibilities, their training, their resources or their budgets.
“It also important that we must ensure that we can maintain Law and Order. Those who are responsible for maintaining Law and Order must also understand that there cannot be any excuses for not being able to maintain Law and Order.
“We must address issues of unemployment and begin to think out of the box on how to do that. Again, it is not just a Federal government responsibility, States and Local Governments also have a role to play and I hope that we continue to follow this up in our different Committees.
”The policies are there and we must play our own role in ensuring that those agencies that are responsible, from agriculture, to the issue of job creation, to also the issue of the social safety that we put in place are held accountable,” Saraki said.