•Urges Army to rescue missing farmers, fortify security in Geidam, Yunusari LGAs
•Laments occupation of Ogwuaniocha community for two years by criminal gangs
•Vows to tackle financial crimes, money laundering
Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja
The House of Representatives yesterday, raised the alarm that communities in Yobe State may soon be overrun by Boko Haram terrorists if urgent and drastic steps were not taken.
The House raised the alarm following the killing of 78 people by the terrorists namely Koshebe, Karkut and Bulabulin in Jere Mafa Local government and Nguro Kayaiya, Gumsa and Kusur towns of Geidam local government areas.
To this end, the Green Chamber called on the Nigerian Army to immediately mobilise troops to the affected areas, neutralise the terrorists and restore normalcy to the villages.
The resolution of the House followed the adoption of a motion moved at the by Hon. Ahmed Satomi.
Moving the motion, the lawmaker disclosed that on Saturday, November, 4, 2023, heavily armed Boko Haram terrorists attacked Zabarmari farmers working on their rice fields in the villages of Koshebe, Karkut and Bulabulin of Jere Mafa Local government area killing several of them.
Satomi, expressed worry that the attack was carried out by terrorists less than 20 kilometers from Maiduguri, the Borno State capital
He explained that the terrorists were on motorcycles, divided themselves into three groups and attacked the villagers with cutlasses and knives to stab and butcher the victims.
The lawmaker stressed that currently, security forces and Civilian Joint Task Force groups in Borno State have recovered nine dead bodies while search continued in a bid to find more persons still missing.
Satomi, noted that in spite of the terrorists’ attack on November 4, and the current search and rescue operations still ongoing, another attack and massacre of about 50 persons was again carried out on Sunday night on November 5, 2023.
He said: “Further alarmed that if urgent and drastic steps are not taken, the area may be overrun by terrorists with attendant dire consequences.”
The House resolved to, “Mandate the Army to immediately mobilise troops to the affected areas to neutralise the terrorists and restore normalcy to the villages.”
The House also urged the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), the North East Development Commission and the Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs to as a matter of urgency mobilise humanitarian and relief materials to the affected villages.
In the meantime, the House has called the military to fortify security in Geidam and Yunusari Local government area to secure the communities and in order to forestall future attacks.
The resolution of the House was sequel to the adoption of a motion on terrorists’ attack on some villages in Geidam Local Government Area, Yobe State moved at plenary by Hon. Lawan Ali.
Also moving the motion, Ali pointed out that there was an attack by terrorists in Nguro Kayaiya a Community under Kusur Damakarwa Ward in between Gumsa and Kusur towns of Geidam LGA, Yobe State on Monday October 30th and Tuesday, October 31st, 2023.
He noted that the terrorists who were on a revenge mission, went to Nguro Kayaiya riding on about 15 motor bikes with sophisticated weapons, paraded and killed 16 villagers at the outskirts of the village and later burnt down the village including houses, vehicles and tricycles.
Ali, added that on October, 31, in the afternoon, villagers from neighboring Mallam Kelluri of Gumsa village unit numbering about 14 on a tricycle ran over explosive device planted by the terrorist around the village which exploded and killed 12 persons while 4 who were taken to hospital.
He expressed concern that several villages including Nguro Kayaiya Village, Jororo Village in Geidam LGA, Garin Bulama Garaiye, in Yunusari Local Government were burnt down.
Ali, noted that this was one of several attacks in Geidam and Yunusari LGAS within the spate of 13 years.
He expressed worry that the recent attack had caused serious humanitarian crisis as a result ejected residents out of the town fleeing to bushes, nearby villages, and some other Local Governments as they were made homeless.
The House, therefore, urged the North East Development Commission (NEDC) and National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to provide succour and relief materials to the victims of the affected communities with utmost urgency.
Also, the House raised the alarm that violent gangs have set up camps in and around Ogwuaniocha Community, sacked the residents, kidnapped the traditional ruler (Igwe), killed and maimed many unchallenged, which is a desecration of the traditional institution and erosion of cultural values.
The Green Chamber decried the resurgence of crisis in the community and its environs last week, leading to abduction of over 20 people who are yet to be accounted for.
Moving the motion at the plenary yesterday, on the urgent need to rescue Ogwuaniocha Community in Ogbaru Federal Constituency, Anambra from the jaws of violent criminal gangs, Hon. Afam Ogene, noted that this was a trend that kept recurring since November, 2021, without meaningful steps by the Anambra State government to rescue the Igwe or explore any administrative measures to find solution to the problem.
He said Ogwuaniocha in Ogbaru Federal Constituency, Anambra State, is an oil bearing community that contributes over 20,000 barrels of crude oil per day, which earned the state its oil producing status;
The lawmaker said the displaced people of Ogwuaniocha were going through difficult times without any provision for shelter or relief materials as they have no Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps.
He further expressed concern that while oil production goes on seamlessly in Ogwuaniocha, the people have been forced to stay off their community for two years now.
Ogene noted that since Monday, November 15, 2023, “no farming activity, no school for the children, no business activities as a result of the occupation of the community by the criminal gangs, who have relocated from other parts of the state and set up camps in and around the community.”
The House, therefore, resolved to set up an Ad-hoc Committee to unravel the remote and persisting causes of the crisis and come up with suggestions on how to resolve same.
It also directed the Committee on NEMA to set up an internally displaced persons’ camp for the people and provide them with relief materials.
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has expressed confidence in its capabilities to tackle the innate challenges of financial crimes in the country.
The Chairman of the House Committee Financial Crimes, Hon. Ginger Obinna, disclosed this yesterday, at the inaugural meeting of the committee.
He said the committee would roll out strategies and policies necessary to safeguard the nation’s financial system and uphold the rule of law.
Obinna, added that the mandate of the committee included monitoring agencies involved in the detection of financial crimes, money laundering and advance fee fraud; oversight of all organisations, agencies and institutions established by law on financial crimes and also annual budget estimates.
He added: “While acknowledging the enormous responsibilities of committee, we are confidence and affirm your capabilities to tackle the innate challenges of financial crimes in our country, let us carry our mission forward with renewed energy and determination and to make positive changes to the nation’s economy in tandem with the set agenda of this administration to fight corruption. Corruption is not going to be business as usual.
“Your dedication to our shared cause, your tireless efforts in the pursuit of justice, and your resilience in the face of complex challenges which includes financial crimes and criminalities, illicit financial flow, money laundry, terrorism financing, advance fee fraud (419) cybercrimes are some of the menace that are bedeviling our nation today. More so all hands must be put on deck to fight this monster call corruption.”
Obinna, assured that the committee would ensure that those who engage in financial crimes and criminalities were held accountable and brought to justice.