Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Speech: Nigerian President’s Declaration Of State Of Emergency In Three Northern States

President Goodluck Jonathan Making the Speech

Dear compatriots, 

It has become necessary for me to address you on the recent spate of terrorist activities and protracted security challenges in some parts of the country, particularly in Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe, Bauchi, Kano, Plateau and most recently Bayelsa, Taraba, Benue and Nasarawa states.  These unfortunate events have led to needless loss of lives and property of many innocent Nigerians including members of our security forces. 

The recent killing of security operatives by a cult group in Nasarawa state is particularly condemnable. I have directed that no effort or expense be spared in identifying and bringing to justice all those who had a hand in the killing of the operatives. 

The activities of insurgents and terrorists have been reprehensible, causing fear among our citizens and a near-breakdown of law and order in parts of the country, especially the North. We have taken robust steps to unravel and address the root causes of these crises, but it would appear that there is a systematic effort by insurgents and terrorists to destabilize the Nigerian state and test our collective resolve.

Since I returned to the country after cutting short my visit to South Africa and aborting a planned state visit to Namibia, I have received detailed briefings from our security agencies. These briefings indicate that what we are facing is not just militancy or criminality, but a rebellion and insurgency by terrorist groups which pose a very serious threat to national unity and territorial integrity. Already, some northern parts of Borno state have been taken over by groups whose allegiance is to different flags and ideologies.

These terrorists and insurgents seem determined to establish control and authority over parts of our beloved nation and to progressively overwhelm the rest of the country. In many places, they have destroyed the Nigerian flag and other symbols of state authority and in their place, hoisted strange flags suggesting the exercise of alternative sovereignty.

They have attacked government buildings and facilities. They have murdered innocent citizens and state officials. They have set houses ablaze, and taken women and children as hostages. These actions amount to a declaration of war and a deliberate attempt to undermine the authority of the Nigerian state and threaten her territorial integrity. As a responsible government, we will not tolerate this. 

Previously, we adopted a multi-track approach to the resolution of this problem through actions which included persuasion, dialogue and widespread consultation with the political, religious and community leaders in the affected states.

We exercised restraint to allow for all efforts by both State Governors and well-meaning Nigerians to stop the repeated cases of mindless violence.

Yet, the insurgents and terrorists seek to prevent government from fulfilling its constitutional obligations to the people as they pursue their fanatical agenda of mayhem, mass murder, division and separatism. 

While the efforts at persuasion and dialogue will continue, let me reiterate that we have a sacred duty to ensure the security and well-being of all our people and protect the sovereign integrity of our country. Therefore, we shall, on no account, shy away from doing whatever becomes necessary to provide the fullest possible security for the citizens of this country in any part of the country they choose to reside.

We have a duty to stand firm against those who threaten the sovereign integrity of the Nigerian state. Our will is strong, because our faith lies in the indivisibility of Nigeria.

Following recent developments in the affected states, it has become necessary for Government to take extraordinary measures to restore normalcy. After wide consultations, and in exercise of the powers conferred on me by the provisions of Section 305, sub-section 1 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, I hereby declare a State of Emergency in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states.

Accordingly, the Chief of Defence Staff has been directed to immediately deploy more troops to these states for more effective internal security operations. The troops and other security agencies involved in these operations have orders to take all necessary action, within the ambit of their rules of engagement, to put an end to the impunity of insurgents and terrorists. 

This will include the authority to arrest and detain suspects, the taking of possession and control of any building or structure used for terrorist purposes, the lock-down of any area of terrorist operation, the conduct of searches, and the apprehension of persons in illegal possession of weapons.

The details of this Proclamation will be transmitted to the National Assembly in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution. But in the meantime, let me make it clear that within the purview of this Proclamation, the Governors and other political office holders in the affected states will continue to discharge their constitutional responsibilities. 

I urge the political leadership in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states to co-operate maximally with the Armed Forces and the Police to ensure that the exercise succeeds. We call on the citizenry to co-operate with our security agencies to ensure a return to normalcy within the shortest possible time.

I am again approaching our neighbouring countries, through diplomatic channels, as done in the recent past, for their co-operation in apprehending any terrorist elements that may escape across the border.

Nigerians are peace-loving people; these sad events perpetrated by those who do not wish our nation well have not changed the essential character of our people.

I want to reassure you all that those who are directly or indirectly encouraging any form of rebellion against the Nigerian state, and their collaborators; those insurgents and terrorists who take delight in killing our security operatives, whoever they may be, wherever they may go, we will hunt them down, we will fish them out, and we will bring them to justice. No matter what it takes, we will win this war against terror.

I am convinced that with your support and prayers, we shall overcome these challenges and together, we will restore every part of our country to the path of peace, growth and development.

Long live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

News Report: Nigerian President Declares State of Emergency In Three Northern States

President Goodluck Jonathan Making The Broadcast

The Nigerian President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has declared state of emergency in three northern states.

The states are Adamawa, Yobe and Borno states.

The state of emergency was announced in a national television broadcast today.

The President relied on section 305, subsection 1 of the Nigerian constitution to invoke the emergency.

The governors of the three states, who are still in office met with the President before the announcement.

News Release: The Right Livelihood Award Foundation Mourns Passing Away Of 2004 Awardee

Late Asghar Ali Engineer

The Right Livelihood Award Foundation mourns the death of Indian scholar and reformist Mr. Asghar Ali Engineer. Mr. Engineer dedicated his life to tolerance and peaceful religious co-existence, for which he accepted the Right Livelihood Award in 2004.

Asghar Ali Engineer passed away after prolonged illness on Tuesday, May 14th, at the age of 74. He is survived by his son Irfaan and his daughter Seema.

Born in 1939, Engineer retired as a chemical engineer in 1972 to fully devote himself to participating in the Bohra reform movement. Writing prolifically on Hindu-Muslim relations, he established the Centre for Study of Society and Secularism to promote communal harmony in 1993. He had of late written extensively on the need for the fullest realization of women’s rights in Muslim countries, which he argues is consistent with what has been prescribed in the Qur’an.

In 2004, Asghar Ali Engineer received the Right Livelihood Award jointly with Swami Agnivesh. Swami Agnivesh today told the Right Livelihood Award Foundation: “He was my great friend, and we will all miss him. He was a great social and religious reformer. We have many religious preachers, but religious reformers are few and far between. Despite several attacks, he persisted with his work, and always spoke truth to power. I pledge to carry forward his legacy of reforming religion to make it more rational, more inclusive and against fundamentalism."

The Right Livelihood Award Foundation's thoughts  are with Asghar Ali Engineer's family and friends at this difficult time.

Ole von Uexkull
Executive Director
Right Livelihood Award Foundation
+ 46 8 70 20 339
Email: info@rightlivelihood.

News Release: UN Security Council Deplores Recent Deadly Attack In Benghazi

The members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the deadly attack that occurred in Benghazi, Libya, on 13 May, causing numerous deaths and injuries.  The members of the Security Council expressed their deep sympathy and sincere condolences to the families of the victims of this heinous act, and to the Government and people of Libya.

The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring the perpetrators of this act to justice, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with the Libyan authorities in this regard.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed the need to combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations and all obligations under international law, in particular international human rights, refugee and humanitarian law, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts.

The members of the Security Council underlined the commitment of the international community to support Libya’s successful transition to a secure, peaceful and prosperous democracy.

Released By UN Department Of Information