NDU Nwokolo, the team lead of Nextier SPD, a consultancy firm on Human Security, has said that the Presidency’s comment on the killing of Borno Farmers lacks intelligence and empathy.
Nwokolo said this on Tuesday when he featured on Arise TV to discuss the rate of insecurity in the Northeastern part of Nigeria.
“I think that statement is without tact, lacks empathy and lacks intelligence, you don’t say that, and I like the question that was posed to him by the anchor of the programme which is; these are illiterate farmers, do they need clearance, it’s very obvious that our problem is of strategy implementation and programming,” said Nwokolo.
During an interview on Monday, Shehu had said that the slain Borno farmers were not issued a clearance before they resumed activities in the area where they were killed.
Nwokolo stated that for over a month, the governor of Borno State, Babangana Zulum has been telling the residents to go back to the farm or die of hunger.
He said that if the governor’s comment is related to that of Garba Shehu, the spokesperson to the Nigerian President it is contradictory adding that the contradiction implies that there is no synergy between the military and the state government.
He further questioned that does it mean that there is no security architecture for the farmers knowing fully well that this is their harvest period.
Nwokolo noted that on the implication of killing of 43 farmers in Borno State, there is a possibility that there would be food scarcity because fear has been instilled in other farmers in the state.
He stated that the farmers are likely to desert their farms and go to Internally Displaced Person (IDP) camps in the state.
On claims that the farmers were attacked with such ferocity because they had refused to pay levies to Boko Haram terrorists, Nwokolo said it is likely because it is happening.
“It’s equally happening all over the country, it’s happening in Zamfara state, in Niger State, in Sokoto, Katsina, Farmers are suffering. You can’t go to a farm now without someone coming to take levies from you. The other day, I have my researchers in, Zamfara state, telling me that they (Boko Haram) actually wrote to farmers asking them to pay some sort of levy before they can go back to harvest their products,” Nwokolo said.