Nigeria: Govt's Done a Lot to Combat Insecurity - Presidency

Battle between farmers and herders in Nigeria
17 July 2018

Abuja — The Presidency, yesterday, debunked insinuations that President Muhammadu Buhari has not done enough to protect the lives and property of the citizenry.

According to the Presidency, government has recorded tremendous success to guarantee security of Nigerians.

It specifically stated that President Buhari met a tattered security situation where Boko Haram insurgents had taken over some communities in the North-East, noting that after three years of the administration, Boko Haram insurgents had been beaten back.

Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Chief Femi Adesina, said in a statement in Abuja: "In May 2015, when the administration emerged, the security situation was in tatters. It pulled up its bootstraps, rolled up its sleeves, set to work, and the Boko Haram insurgency was beaten back. It was eventually degraded.

"Other security challenges are being tackled and will subsequently become history. Not doing enough, as some critics claim, is not part of the deal, nor is it reality. No, not by any stretch of imagination. A lot is being done and success is guaranteed.

"A popular refrain from some quarters is that the President is not doing enough to combat the insecurity that has beleaguered the country in recent times.

"Lest that untruth begin to wear a garb of reality, let us consider some initiatives taken under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari to rein in the security situation, particularly since January, 2018."

Chronicle of Buhari's achievements on security

Chronicling the achievements of the Buhari in the areas of security administration, Adesina said: "Leadership of the police was deployed to Benue State, after mass killings reportedly committed by herdsmen. This was followed by a fact-finding team, led by Minister of Interior, and deployment of Special Forces of the military to restore law and order.

"National Economic Council sets up 10-man committee on farmers/herdsmen clashes, headed by the Vice President.

"The 1 Division of Nigerian Army, Kaduna, launched a special operation, Karamin Goro (Small Kolanut), in collaboration with the Air Force, Police, Department of State Services, and Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, to tackle kidnapping, robbery and cattle rustling in parts of Kaduna and Niger states (Minna-Birnin Gwari-Pandogari and Minna-Sarkin Pawa general areas).

"In February 2018, the Nigerian Army commenced Exercise Ayem Akpatuma, covering Benue, Taraba, Kogi, Nasarawa, Kaduna and Niger states to tackle the cases of kidnappings, herdsmen/farmers' clashes, among others.

"The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) inducted its first indigenous operational Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, UAV, Tsaigumi. The newly-inducted UAV has day and night capability, an operational endurance in excess of 10 hours, a service ceiling of 15,000 feet and a mission radius of 100 km, and is capable of being used for policing operations, disaster management, convoy protection, maritime patrol, pipeline, power line monitoring as well as mapping and border patrol duties.

"The Nigerian Air Force, NAF, established a total of 10 new units as NAF had concluded plans to set up Quick Response Wings, QRWs, across Nasarawa State, in a bid to tackle the herders/farmers clashes plaguing some states within the axis.

"In March this year, President Buhari began sympathy visits to states that had experienced wanton killings in the country.

"The Nigerian Army extended Exercise Ayem Akpatuma in Taraba State by two months.

"The committee set up by National Economic Council on farmers/herdsmen clashes submits report, making far reaching recommendations for peace, including ranching in five states.

"In April this year, Nigerian Air Force took delivery of a second batch of two brand new Mi-35N helicopter gunships to boost internal security; deployed Special Force to Zamfara State to combat criminality."

Buhari committed to ending killings --Ogbeh

Also, yesterday, Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh, said President Buhari was committed to finding a lasting solution to the frequent clashes between herders and farmers in the country.

Speaking in an interactive session with Nigerian post-graduate students in Wageningen University and Research Centre, WUR, Netherlands, widely regarded as one of the world's top agricultural research institutions, the minister assured the students that government was on top of the security situation in the country.

He was responding to concerns raised by the students about the security situation in some North Central states in the country, particularly the clashes between pastoralists and farmers.

Ogbeh; Minister of State, Industry, Trade and Investment, Aisha Abubakar; National Security Adviser, NSA, Major-General Babagana Monguno (retd); Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State and Governor Rotimi Akeredeolu of Ondo State, who are part of President Buhari's official delegation to the Netherlands, had visited the research centre for greenhouses in Bleiswijk, operated by WUR.

After a guided tour of the centre, Ogbeh told the students that Nigeria was looking forward to their innovation, learning, expertise and knowledge to address some of the current challenges in the agriculture and food security sectors.

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