The League of Northern Groups (LNG) has accused the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) of receiving N500m to weep in public over the security situation in the country.
According to LNG, the Coalition is nothing but a band of merchant sponsored by top politicians behind the continuous killing of innocent Nigerians in the north to run its propaganda.
Speaking on behalf of the group at a press conference in Abuja on Wednesday, LNG’s Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Aminu Abubakar, said it aims to address the growing misinformation about the security situation in the north, especially at a time it has been hijacked by some disgruntled politicians.
From carrying out protests, LNG revealed that the northern coalition’s job has grown into a propaganda wing, inflating casualty figures from incidents of security breaches.
The aim, it said, is to ultimately pressure President Muhammadu Buhari to sack his military chiefs and failure to do so has seen renewed killings and campaigns.
Among others, the League of Northern Groups challenged CNG to publish details of its financing with particular emphasis to the identity of donors.
It further called on the coalition to explain its ties with a former presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
LNG, however, confessed that it is praying for the Coalition of Northern Groups to repent and stop supporting evil.
Read the full statement below:
Gentlemen of the press. We will like to start by appealing that everyone here present does their utmost best to conform to the protocols prescribed for the control of COVID-19 throughout their stay here. The League of Northern Youth Groups (NYFG) is a law-abiding organization and is fully supportive of efforts to curb the spread of the virus. We thank you as you cooperate with us to support the ongoing efforts to keep Nigerians and each other safe.
We invited you here today because we find it imperative to alert Nigerians to an upsurge in disinformation and misinformation campaign around the issue of insecurity in the northern parts of the country. Let us digress a little to assert that the expression, “insecurity in the northern part of Nigeria” is in itself a misnomer because there are security concerns across the country. The difference is perhaps the intensity of what obtains in the north. It must also be said that there are security concerns in many countries of the world, including those that are regarded as advanced with the difference being in how the situation of each specific country is reported.
What stands the situation in the north out is the baffling trend where incidents of attacks resulting in the loss of human life have been packaged into a business. This business has instigators, dissatisfied politicians, who have been discovered to be the ones sponsoring the spate of violence in pursuit of whatever twisted objective it is they want to achieve. The manifestation of this dangerous class of people in recent days is the manner in which they are referring to the deaths they have caused as the basis for President Muhammadu Buhari to sack his military chiefs as if that very act being proposed is a pre-condition to stop further torment of the citizens they are killing.
There are also the foot soldiers that assist these killers recruited by these politicians in perpetuating and amplifying the terrorism unleashed on citizens through propaganda that distorts reality on a mind-boggling scale. These are groups that often inflate casualty figures from incidents of security breaches in a way that glorify the killers, demonize the government, demoralize the security and military personnel while further traumatizing survivors. Such groups have increased their activities in recent weeks, which not surprisingly corresponds with the time their political overlords were baying for the sack of military chiefs.
We have identified the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) as one of these groups that have been terrorizing Nigerians with propaganda. The group recently alleged that 240 persons have been killed in the last week. Gentlemen of the press, note that this approach by CNG marks an escalation to the protests they had hoped to use in grounding the country – their resort to compiling seemingly depressing tallies instead of protests means that they have moved their attacks against the state from the physical to the psychological. It is a strategy to instil fear in the population so that the killers sent out by their masters will meet communities that are already emotionally defeated and are therefore easy to attack.
It is crucial that no one is misled into believing that the gentlemen behind the Coalition of Northern Groups are engaged in legitimate activism, which would imply that any damage done in the course of their agitations was unintended. Far from it. These are no activists but economically activated activists, who are in it for what they have been paid as opposed to a passion for the improvement of their communities. What we have learnt is that the Coalition of Northern Groups is on the take and was paid 500 million naira by the top politicians behind the continuous killing of innocent Nigerians in the north in order for it to run its propaganda. A coalition of Northern Groups is nothing but a band of merchants of death running the propaganda wing of the sponsors of terrorism in the north.
So that this matter can be given the right context, we are challenging the Coalition of Northern Youth as follow:
CNG should dare publish details of its financing with particular emphasis to the identity of donors, including flagging the ones that politically exposed persons among them provides.
The Coalition should explain its link or connection with the former presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, including coming clear on the nature of instructions they have received from him or his agents as well as the financial relationship of the group to Atiku and his businesses.
CNG should explain its link with the bandits in the north as well as Boko Haram since it is able to keep such a tally of body count from the attacks carried out by these bandits. It is no mere coincidence that there is usually a lull in attacks when the coalition is carrying out its protests.
It should disclose its relationship with foreign or international NGOs, with details on the nature of interactions they have had in the last three months since there are uncanny similarities between the formats they have adopted in demonizing the government and the attack plan being executed by an organization like Amnesty International.
They should also disclose the groups and persons it has made payments to in recent weeks since such illicit payments are now known to have been used to mobilize the protests against the government.
Should it be unable to come up with satisfactory responses to the posers above, we urge the Coalition of Northern Groups to keep quiet and stop dancing on the grave of the dead. They shame their own families by the very despicable act of pretending to be activists during the day while by night they hobnob with the sponsors and promoters of the killings in northern Nigeria.
Rather than vilifying soldiers and military chiefs that are making sacrifices for the country or attacking the government of President Muhammadu Buhari, they should rather give an ultimatum to their sponsors for the regime of killings that they have instigated to end.
The League of Northern Youth Groups is mindful of the voluntary commitment made by CNG when it said: “In place of the halted protests, the CNG hereby resolves to direct its state coordinators to raise their levels of vigilance and to assist the security forces with credible relevant intelligence needed to tackle the situation.” We will be watching to see the extent to which they will keep to their words and if in reality, they will join the rest of us in supporting the military as we have always done.
The genuineness of their promise will contribute to thwarting the killers that their sponsors had unleashed on the land. We pray that the Coalition of Northern Groups is truly prepared to be repentant and stop supporting evil.
May God heal our land.