The President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, has stated that working towards peace in Plateau State and Nigeria as a whole, must remain the primary responsibility of all Nigerians.
Saraki, in a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media & Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, said this, during a condolence visit to Plateau State, over this weekend’s killings. The Senate President was joined by the Senate Deputy Majority Leader, Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah and Senator Ubali Shittu.
Saraki, who had earlier in the day, met with President Muhammadu Buhari, alongside Speaker Yakubu Dogara, was received by the Plateau State Governor, Rt. Hon. Simon Lalong, at the Plateau State Government House.
“Let me convey my deepest sympathy for the unfortunate and sad incident that occurred in Plateau State this weekend that claimed many innocent lives. This is not only a loss to Plateau State, but to the entire nation.
“Although the National Assembly is currently not in session, when we resume next week, this is one of the prime issues that will be up for discussion. However, we thought it necessary to come here personally to meet with the people of Plateau State to commiserate with the families — because words cannot really describe this kind of pain.
“Our prayer to Almighty God is to grant the affected families the fortitude to bear these losses. At this time as well, I also pray to God to give His Excellency, the Governor, the courage to be able to manage this challenge and bring solace to a lot of people,” Saraki said.
The President of the Senate also stated that this was a very difficult time for Plateau State, however, the entire nation stands with Plateau during this difficult time.
“This is a very difficult time for Plateau State. However, I want to reassure you that the entire country is with you and the entire National Assembly stands with you.
“We were late in coming here because both myself and the Honourable Speaker of the House of Representatives sought an appointment with Mr. President on the killings that occurred here — to see how we would come together to see what could be done to forestall and prevent future occurrences like this and provide relief and support for all those that have been affected. This is our paramount responsibility. Whatever that needs to be done, must be done,” he said.
The President of the Senate also called on the nation’s security agencies to ensure that those responsible for the killings are quickly apprehended to help bring an end to the killings in Plateau State.
“We must also ensure that all those who are responsible for these killings must account for it. It is part of providing succour and ensuring the peace. You cannot bring back the lives, but finding and prosecuting the perpetrators will go a long way in helping to calm people and ease the pain that they are going through.
“Therefore, yet again, we call on our security agents to ensure that they find the perpetrators that have done this and make them account for their detestable actions.
“Let me use this opportunity to appeal to everyone, to the entire people of Plateau State: Nobody wins from this. Nobody. These killings from today sets the clock back many years, therefore, I want to appeal to the entire people of Plateau State, the elderly, the young, the men and the women, to ensure that we work towards peace. Working towards peace is not only the responsibility of the Governor or the traditional rulers in the state. It is incumbent on everyone. Working towards peace is not Simon Lalong’s problem alone.”
The Governor of the State, Rt. Hon. Simon Lalong, commended the President of the Senate and the Senate delegation saying: “As the leader of the North Central, we welcome you to our state. When this thing started, as the leader of our geopolitical region, you looked for me and you called me, despite your busy schedule to ask me “What can I do to help?”
“On behalf of the good people of Plateau State, I thank you and the Senate delegation for being here. This is because you are not only here representing yourselves, you are here representing the entire National Assembly.”