The pan-Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has said that the truth was the Federal Government does not have the willpower to treat bandits the very way they deserve to be treated “as criminals”.
Rather than treat them as terrorists they are, the government treats them with carrots and sticks, and they continue with their heinous activities, the group fumes.
Ohanaeze was reacting to a recent statement by Abubakar Malami, the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), who said the federal government is yet to gazzete the order proscribing bandits as terrorists.
Speaking during a Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) programme on Tuesday, Malami said the FG is trying to ensure that it operates within the confines of international best practices.
“Government has a responsibility to act but within the context of acting, you’re equally expected to operate within the confines of international best practices associated with engagement, and one of such best practices is that you can only use maximum force on groups, individuals that are declared terrorists and that is where the application of the Terrorism Act comes in place,” he had said.
But speaking through its spokesman, Chief Alex Ogbonnia, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, said: “We condemn that bandits have not been declared terrorists which they are. And as long as they are not called bandits and treated as such, they will continue with their killings and destructions.
“As long as the Federal Government lacks the willpower to declare them terrorists, they will continue to do what they are doing, killing the people.”