The Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) has called on all stakeholders in the northern Nigeria to come together and demand an immediate end to all forms of banditry and killings in the region.
Speaking at the ‘Security Assessment Meeting and Harmonization of State Exco and Interest Groups’ in Lokoja, Kogi state capital, on Monday, a national leader of CNG, Mohammed Mohammed noted that virtually the entire North is turning into a battlefront, and held hostage of Boko Haram and marauding bandits.
He added that with the unfolding scenario, it seems the northern region has been abandoned by those saddled with the responsibility of protecting lives and properties of the citizenry.
He assured stakeholders in Kogi that CNG will stand tall in defending the region on all issues.
“North is known for peace, agriculture and food security but these are now endangered by current sad situation.
“In order to speak for the North collectively, we decided to go round the 19 states in the region.
“CNG does not operate in isolation. We have identified groups that has consistently defended the interest of common man in the respective states and we are here to harmonize the various interest groups in Kogi,” he said.
In his opening remarks, another national leader, Mohammed Eneji, stated that CNG, which has been in existence for about two decades, is a coalition of various groups and activists in the north.
Eneji, an indigene of Kogi state, explained that CNG’s sole interest is to protect the interest of common man in northern Nigeria.
According to him, the North has been backward in terms of pro-people activism and protection of rights of its citizens.
“Afenifere represents the interests of people in the South West region, Ohaneze Ndigbo is a prominent interest group in Eastern Nigeria. Also, we have PANDEF championing the cause of Niger Deltans. CNG is poised to speak for and defend the interest of common man in the North.
“We have been to Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger and other parts of the North Central geo-political zone to ensure we bring together all bodies that represents the people and forge a common front in the overall interest of Northern Nigeria.
“CNG has been in the frontline tackling the menace of drug abuse and insecurity in the North. We defended the interest of the North in the face of unprovoked threats from Nnamdi Kanu’s IPOB. We will not relent in our efforts,” he said.
After the harmonization meeting, Mr Idris Yakubu emerge as the State Coordinator of CNG in Kogi state. Also, Comrade Habib Salau emerge as Deputy Coordinator with Comrade Musa Yabagi as Secretary.
The national team led by Mohammed Mohammed paid the Maigari of Lokoja, Alh. Kabiru Mohammadu Maikarfi III, a courtesy visit before moving on to Plateau state.