Leaders from across the country have criticised the federal government over its failure to find a solution to the killings recorded in various states.
Since the turn of the year, hundreds have been killed in clashes between herdsmen and farmers, attacks by suspected herders, bandits, among others.
A communique issued on Wednesday after a one-day summit of national elders and leaders said various infractions being experienced in the country are “steadily eroding public confidence in our hard-earned democracy”.
The leaders — from the Northern Elders Forum (NEF), Afenifere, Ohaeneze Ndigbo, and Pan Niger Delta Forum — said the nation is witnessing “unprecedented incompetence” from the government.
The communique, signed by leaders of each of the groups represented, read: “The summit observes as follows: that the general state of insecurity and incessant killings in Nigeria have escalated in recent times with several communities at the mercy of marauding killers.
“The present administration had identified security as one of the three pillars of its change agenda. However, the country’s entire security and law and order assets appear incapable of arresting the drift towards a state of anarchy.
“Summit therefore observes with regret the negation of this administration’s commitment and undertaking to provide security to all Nigerians.
“That the country now witnesses unprecedented incompetence and enthronement of mediocrity in dealing with the horrendous spate of killings and general insecurity across the country.
“That in the eyes of many affected communities, there appears to be palpable government complicity in the killings going on around the country. These killings claimed more than 3,500 lives in 2017, a figure that could be much higher in 2018.”
‘ECONOMY IN SHAMBLES, CITIZENS SUFFERING’
The communique noted that the nation’s economy is characterised by “significant loss of output, massive youth unemployment, a rising level of poverty, instability, and irregular migration of skilled and unskilled labour.
“In fact, according to the World Bank, the unemployment rate in Nigeria has increased despite its purported exit from recession in 2017.
“This is a national embarrassment and a disgrace to a country that is endowed with abundant resources”.
The leaders called on the government to put adequate measures in place to address the hardship faced by “many Nigerians”.
Nigeria recently overtook India as the poverty capital of the world while the country’s ranking on the human development index was one of the lowest in the world, standing at 152 out of the 188 countries surveyed in 2017.