Insecurity: Buhari To Visit Affected States

Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, under fire because of mounting security threats, including Boko Haram, is to tour states worst-hit by the violence, his office said on Monday.

“From today, March 5, he will visit Taraba, and subsequently Benue, Yobe, Zamfara and Rivers states,” the presidency said in an emailed statement.

Yobe, in northeast Nigeria, is where Boko Haram abducted 110 schoolgirls in the town of Dapchi on February 19, nearly four years after a similar abduction caused global outrage.

Then, more than 200 girls were seized from their boarding school in the remote town of Chibok in Borno state, bringing world-wide attention on the insurgency.

The then-president, Goodluck Jonathan, was heavily criticised for his slow response to the kidnapping.

Last weekend, Buhari, who has called the abduction from Dapchi a “national disaster”, was criticised for attending a society wedding in the northern city of Kano. His political opponents have said he should have visited Dapchi instead.

It was not immediately clear whether Buhari’s Yobe itinerary included a trip to the town. The 75-year-old Buhari was elected in 2015 on a pledge to defeat Boko Haram. But the Dapchi attack and others have raised questions about the extent of repeated government claims to have virtually defeated the Islamist militants. Buhari’s spokesman, Femi Adesina, said he would be making an “on-the-spot assessment” of “recent terrorist attacks, criminal activities and communal clashes” on his visits.

He would also “meet and console the communities affected”. The central state of Benue and Zamfara in the northwest have both been hit by renewed clashes between farmers and nomadic herdsmen over access to resources.

Last month, extra troops were sent to try to quell violence in Benue, as well as neighbouring Taraba and Nasarawa. Buhari, who also doubles up as oil minister, has yet to visit the strategic southern state of Rivers, which is the hub of Nigeria’s oil and gas sector.

The state has long been hit by political violence. Adesina sought to play down allegations that Buhari is out of touch with the security situation, saying he had received daily briefings and been “in constant touch” with governors.


Presidency Reacts To Soyinka’s Comments, Insists Security Not Failing

The Presidency has reacted to comments made by Professor Wole Soyinka in which called on Nigerians to defend themselves in the heat of prevailing security challenges.

Speaking about the call during his appearance on Politics Today, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, noted that the Federal Government would review the suggestion from the Nobel Laureate.

“What Professor Soyinka has said can just be one of the proffered solutions which will be looked out,” he said on Tuesday. “I have spoken about the nine governors’ committee headed by Professor (Yemi) Osinbajo who is the Vice President of the country.”

Adesina said this a few hours after Professor Soyinka decried the spate of killings in parts of the country.

The revered scholar had told journalists in Lagos that the phenomenon of herdsmen and farmers clashes was not new, but an issue that has graduated to an alarming state in the last eight years.

He then called for an organised resistance to the menace, describing the herdsmen as a new breed of Boko Haram and internal colonialists.

Reacting to some of the issues raised by the Nobel Laureate, Adesina refuted claims that the security apparatus was in a near comatose, insisting that the security agencies were rising up to the challenges.

According to him, the issue of herdsmen and farmers crisis is a national emergency that “determines to be interrogated from different sides.”

“There is a security apparatus in the country which is working to secure the country,” Adesina insisted.

“Yes, there are challenges, but that apparatus is rising to those challenges. I would not agree with you that it is failing.”

The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has come under severe criticisms in recent times over Nigeria’s security among other issues.

The President was also accused by some people of not being sensitive to the killings that have led to the death of many innocent Nigerians since the beginning of the year.

In his reaction, President Buhari said it would be dishonest to say he was enjoying himself and not doing anything to stop the killings.

Insecurity: Buhari Holds Closed-Door Meeting With Security Chiefs, Osinbajo


President Muhammadu Buhari is currently in a meeting with the nation’s Service Chiefs at the presidential villa in Abuja.

The meeting is also being attended by the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), as well as the Comptroller General of Immigration.

The Director Generals of National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Department of State Services (DSS), and the Inspector General of Police are also at the meeting.

The Minister of Interior, Lieutenant General Abdulrahman Dambazau (rtd), Foreign Affairs Minister, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama and the Minister of Defence Mansur Mohammed Dan Ali are also in attendance.

Although the agenda has not been made known, the meeting may not be unconnected with the current security challenges in the country, particularly, the continued attacks by suspected herdsmen in parts of the country, especially the north-central states.

President Muhammadu Buhari has come under severe criticism over his handling of the security challenge, but he has refuted the claim of sloppiness in his approach, saying he has since given orders for necessary action to be taken by the security agencies.