President Muhammadu Buhari again on Monday met the nation’s security chiefs in what was believed to be part of efforts aimed at curtailing the security challenges being witnessed across the country.
The meeting, which was also attended by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, was held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; Minister of Defence, Mansur Dan-Ali; Minister of Interior, Abdulrahman Dambazau; Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; and the National Security Adviser, Maj.-Gen. Babagana Monguno (retd), also attended.
It was held amidst concerns over the spate of killings by people suspected to be herdsmen in some parts of the country, and abductions in other parts.
The meeting was an extended one, as the number of participants was extended to accommodate the heads of the Nigerian Immigration Service, Nigeria Customs Service, Nigeria Fire Service, Federal Road Safety Commission, Nigeria Prisons Service and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps.
These are apart from the service chiefs and the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, who meet with the President regularly.
Service chiefs who attended the meeting included the Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Lt.-Gen. Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas; and the Chief of Air Staff, Sadique Abubakar.
Others are the Director-General of the Department of State Services, Lawal Daura; and the Director-General of the Nigeria Intelligence Agency, Ahmed Abubakar.
None of those who attended the meeting was willing to speak with State House correspondents when approached for comments at the end of the meeting.
As of the time of filing this report, the Presidency has yet to issue an official statement on the meeting.
It will be recalled that the DSS had, on Saturday, briefed Buhari on the negotiations that led to the release of three University of Maiduguri lecturers abducted by suspected Boko Haram terrorists in Magumeri, Borno State and 10 women kidnapped in a raid by the militant group on a military/police convoy on Damboa Road, near Maiduguri.
Following the briefing, the President had urged the DSS and the Nigerian Army to intensify efforts to bring home the remaining Chibok Girls still in the custody of the terrorists.
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, had read in part, “The President, who got step-by-step progress reports on the lengthy negotiations while they took place, received the good news with a lot of happiness.
“He commended all those who, in one way or the other, helped in making the release possible.
“He then urged the DSS and the Nigerian Army to intensify efforts to bring home the remaining Chibok girls still in the custody of the terrorists.
“The Director-General of the DSS, Lawal Daura, assured the President that they were working hard to bring home the remaining girls and, as soon as possible, bring the Chibok girls’ saga to an end.”