Governor Aminu Masari of Katsina State has berated the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) for demanding his resignation due to his call for self-defence.
Recall that Masari had urged residents of towns hit by bandit terrorists to take up weapons and defend themselves from attacks.
According to the governor, it is morally wrong for people to submit easily to the bandit terrorists without any attempt to defend themselves.
Reacting, CNG asked the governor to immediately resign from his position for failing to protect the people of Katsina from attacks and asking them to arm themselves against bandit terrorists.
But in a statement on Sunday signed by his spokesman, Abdul Labaran, the governor told the CNG that he will not be intimidated, adding that he is not the first governor to ask residents to defend themselves against terrorists.
Masari stated that the group has displayed a “sheer lack of understanding” of the security situation in the country and the workings of the Nigerian Constitution.
The governor described the Northern groups as “self-serving disgruntled elements, masquerading as human rights campaigners”.
He, however, stated that his government is doing everything possible to protect the citizens, adding that security is an exclusive right of the federal government.
“Security is on the exclusive list of the Nigerian Constitution, which means it is exclusively a federal government affair,” the statement read in parts.
“In matters of security, a governor is the Chief Security Officer of his state only in name, because the various security chiefs working in the state take orders not from him, but from their superiors in Abuja.
“The only things they take from governors are the financial and material assistance (both solicited and unsolicited), which they extend to the security institutions in the states.
“As constitutionally elected officeholders, governors do not succumb to the intimidation of some self-serving disgruntled elements, masquerading as human rights campaigners by resigning.
“If they are found wanting in the discharge of their responsibilities, the Nigerian Constitution has provided the protocols for easing them out of office, and no House of Assembly is in the dark about that.
“Masari is not the first Governor to make the suggestion. In states where the citizens do not politicise security issues, they rally round their leaders who had similarly admonished their people.
“Therefore, to suggest that governor Masari should resign for his patriotic candor and courage in admonition his people to wake up and resist the bandits by acquiring arms for self-defense, betrays a sheer lack of the understanding of the letter and spirit as well as the workings of the Nigerian Constitution, or a motive which is anything but altruistic.”