Chris Steven, Abuja
A Civil society organisation, Africa Arise For Change Network (AACN) has hailed the Federal Government’s fight against insurgency in the North-East.
AACN, during a Special Thank -You Christmas Rally To President Muhammadu Buhari, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, said the group were in the Villa because they could not take off their eyes from the unique and excellent leadership of President Mohammadu Buhari in the country.
Helen Onuh, Executive Director of AACN, said as the leader and political head of Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country, “we couldn’t wait any longer for yet another season like this Christmas and New Year eclipse before coming to publicly show our gratitude and to say, a special thank you for the much you have done for us in uplifting this country, in the past two years.
Onuh said, “For Nigerians, today was like a day, we were never destined to see in peace and progress. I still recollect how special seasons like Christmas and New Year, worse of all, Sallah festivities that caged us indoors in practically all major cities of Northern Nigeria, including the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, because of wild, violent and unrestrained Boko Haram terrorism. Ironically, we wept, instead of celebrations.
“The sounds of detonating bombs or explosions; the fear of attacks on shopping malls and motor parks; the phobia of freely worshipping in churches or mosques involuntarily kept us imprisoned in our mansions and shanties in several parts of the country.
“Your Excellency, whether in Northern and Southern Nigeria, hateful and vicious insurgencies, along with other acts of resentful terrorism reduced our humanity and caged us in the confines of our homes. Our children were neither safe in schools nor the marketplace. In taxis or buses, it was the same sad tales”.
Onuh told President Buhari in her address that the insurgency story in the country has changed totally. She said no moment in the country’s entire history has gladdened us more than the firm grip and absolute suppression of acts of terrorism in Nigeria.
She further said, “We cannot be more happier today than to celebrate special seasons in our lives such as Sallah, Christmas and New Year festivities without rising blood pressures or in gloomy moods of what disastrous calamity has befallen our beloved ones. It has not happened in Abuja; it has happened in Kano, Kaduna, Jos or any other major city in Nigeria.
“The criminal ones among us, who turned our peaceful country into a conundrum of hell on earth have been shamed by your hard work and no nonsense stand on security of the citizens, anywhere in the country.
“The Nigerian Military and its sister security agencies under your guidance have kept such special festivities free from the stranglehold of terrorists and their bombs or abductions of innocent citizens. This marks the 3rd consecutive Christmas in Abuja and Nigeria generally without the sounds of bombs tormenting us.”