The Senate at plenary yesterday observed a minute silence in honour of health workers recently killed by yet to be identified gunmen in Kano and Bornu States.
Senators worried that the recent attacks on the health workers painted a "terrible image" to the international community on Nigeria's fight against rising terrorism vis-à-vis the country's fight to eradicate polio.
To this end, Senators resolved to send a condolence message to the people and government of North Korea as well as affected states in Nigeria.
LEADERSHIP recalls last Sunday, officials found the corpses of three North Korean doctors in Potiskum, a town in Yobe State. Two had their throats slit, while one had been beheaded by the attackers.
Those killings came quickly after gunmen shot dead at least nine female polio vaccinators last Friday in Kano. A previous attack on a polio clinic in October in the city killed two police officers on guard there and highlighted the continuing suspicion some in the north have regarding polio vaccines.
A 2003 polio outbreak in Nigeria's north that spread across the world started in part from Islamic leaders claiming the vaccine would sterilise young Muslim girls - rumours that persist today in a country that is one of three in the world where the virus remains endemic (the others are Pakistan and Afghanistan).
In debates on the motion sponsored by Senator Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta/PDP) and 12 other senators, the deputy senate president, Ike Ekweremadu (Enugu/PDP) decried the current 350,000 personnel strength of the Nigeria Police Force and said that it was grossly inadequate to police a country of over 160 million people.