The Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has called for the resignation of military top brass over the bombing that killed 85 villagers and injured several others at Tudun Biri village in the Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State on Sunday.
A public affairs analyst and member of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF), Prof Usman Yusuf made this call in an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Tuesday.
Yusuf said, “This is irresponsible. They will all resign; everybody in the chain of command will be fired. The Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), everybody will go and the President will cut his trip and return home.”
According to him, in other climes, all military chiefs would have tendered their resignation letters over the accident, which has thrown the country into mourning.
He lamented that the military, which ought to protect Nigerians against external threats, was killing the people.
The NEF member stressed that “All of them should go – the CDS, the Chief of Army Staff, the GOC, the operatives, heads must roll.”
Similarly, Jama’atu Nasril Islam on Tuesday called for a full investigation into the drone attack.
The group’s Secretary General, Prof Khalid Aliyu, in a statement in Kaduna, also called for justice for the families of the victims.
Mr Aliyu said JNI, representing the collective voice of the Ummah, stood in profound consternation and grief over the incident.
He said, “It is thus with heavy hearts that we express our deepest condolences and sympathies to the families, as well as the loved ones of the deceased victims, and we fervently pray for the swift recovery and healing of those injured. Nevertheless, the purported bombing of people by the supposed aerial patrol, resulting in the reported loss of no fewer than 100 innocent lives is a reprehensible and deeply condemnable act.
“Such a callous and devastating incident is utterly antithetical to the principles of peace and unity that we, as a community, strive to uphold at this critical moment of the Nigerian nationhood, and the act portends danger, especially to military-civil relationship. JNI is in utter disbelief that the military will act in such a manner knowing fully that before any operation is carried out due diligence is usually carried out, backed with irrefutable intelligence.
“Therefore, we vehemently condemn this tragic incident in its entirety and call for a thorough, impartial, and transparent investigation into the circumstances surrounding the devastating and most unfortunate event. We urge the authorities to ensure that those responsible are held accountable in accordance with the subsisting laws, ‘’he said.
Mr Aliyu also called on the Federal Government through its relevant MDAs to urgently take up the medicals of all the affected victims and pay the due ransom of all the deceased.
According to him, this call has become inevitable considering that similar episodes had occurred in the recent past in Yobe, Zamfara, Borno and other places.
Mr Aliyu said, “We implore God’s infinite mercy upon the departed souls, praying for their peaceful repose in Jannatul-Firdaus, and beseech Him to grant patience and solace to the bereaved families during this incredibly difficult time. May God, the Most Merciful, bestow healing and swift recovery upon the injured.
“JNI calls upon all members of the Ummah to remain steadfast in prayers and solidarity, advocating peace, justice, and harmony in our respective communities.”
The secretary reiterated the group’s commitment to pursuing justice and ensuring that such heartbreaking incidents don’t recur.
“We urge everyone to show restraint and patience as we await the outcome of investigations on the matter, ’’Mr Aliyu urged.
Meanwhile, both the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Christopher Musa and the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lieutenant General Taoreed Lagbaja visited deceased victims’ families and injured ones in hospitals in Kaduna on Tuesday.
The two service chiefs described the accident as regrettable and apologised to the people of the state, promising them that such an accident wouldn’t recur.