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Summit Makes Case For Citizens’ Partnership With Armed Forces To Overcome Insurgency

A clarion call has been made to all Nigerians to rally round the Armed Forces in its bid to wipe out remnants of terrorists, bandits and other criminal elements in the country. 

Renowned academic, Prof. Peter Madoki gave the charge at a one-day summit for target rights groups, conflict managers and social media influencers last Friday in Abuja. 

Prof. Madoki, speaking as chairman of the event organised by Global Amnesty Watch Foundation (GAWF) in conjunction with the Center for International and Strategic Studies (CISS) acknowledged the tremendous feats of the military under President Muhammadu Buhari. 

He recalled how the president propelled troops to launch multiple offensives against these armed groups through different operations. 

On top of suffering hundreds of casualties, the academic noted that over 20, 000 hostages have regained freedom and reunited with their families, most recently the Kankara students in Katsina State. 

“President Buhari and the incumbent Service Chiefs must be counted among the few best leadership gifts to Nigerians and the country,” he said. 

“I appreciate all of them and encourage these leaders to soar higher in the strive to secure Nigeria and humanity”. 

However, Prof. Madoki reckoned that the final piece of the jigsaw is citizens’ partnership with the troops. 

He said with the support of Nigerians, especially civil society groups, non-governmental organisations and social media influencers, the military would be fired up to finish the war.

According to him, the “new media is now the leading crusaders of social change or re-engineering, good governance, human rights and self-determination agitations”.

He further noted that it ” has an expediently amazing outreach even to the remotest of villages. It speedily galvanizes forces potent enough to even pull down the walls of Jericho in a split second”. 

Prof. Madoki recounted the EndSARS movement and the role played by social media influencers. 

He believes if such energy can be channelled to support the troops on the frontlines, the nation would soon witness an end to insecurity. 

His words, “In our country Nigeria, we experienced it with the #EndSARS protests over the same police brutality and extra-judicial killings.  The violence, avoidable deaths, destructions and gores from otherwise peaceful democratic protests would impinge on national psyche for some time.  All of you would agree with me that the messages and calls for solidarity by the organizers of the protests were re-doctored, manipulated and unpatriotically altered by mischievous persons for specific purposes.   

“And in African countries, Nigeria inclusive, which are exposed to the wonders of social media have had to grapple with the basic problem of fake news syndrome or concocted propaganda.  Most social media users are susceptible to the temptation of gulping every stuff churned out and sighted on their social media handles.

“Without any attempt at verification, it is presumed as facts largely because of the unregulated nature of such platforms. There are deliberate distortions on social media by users who delight in twisting facts to inflame negative public passions. But also, some are genuinely oblivious of the facts about events in their milieu or are misled and or, prefer to mislead others in the expansive chain of social media connectivity”.

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