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Insurgency — We will not relent until peace is restored, ….. says NSA Monguno

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Amid the security challenges across the country, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno has said that the Federal Government will not relent until peace is restored.

The NSA gave the assurance on Friday via a statement after a security meeting convened by President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja, reiterating the current administration’s commitment in fixing tackling the various security threats.

“There shall be no relenting until peace and security is significantly restored in our communities,” Monguno, a retired Major-General said. “Mr. President is very prepared to take profound measures in the wider interest of the people and the Nigerian nation.”

Monguno explained that the security meeting is necessitated by the fact that President Buhari is “concerned about the persisting security challenges in parts of the country.”

According to him, the Commander-in-Chief is ever ready to frontally confront the situation in the country.

To the NSA, President Buhari “made it abundantly clear that while the insurgents, bandits and criminals are still at it, he has no doubt that the Nigerian Security agencies and all of us as a nation will certainly overcome all the current security problems and defeat the forces of evil marauding about in different parts of the country.”

“While the criminals continue to test the will of the Nigerian government, the President and the Council which adjourned today’s critical meeting until Tuesday morning to receive further briefings from the Security Chiefs, are set and determined to decisively end the assault on the nation and will do all that it takes,” he added.

Nigeria has been experiencing a series of security threats ranging from terrorism, banditry, militancy, cultism among others in several parts of the country.

The country has been battling terrorism for more than a decade which has killed 36,000 people and displaced hundreds of thousands in the northeast.

The Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) split from the jihadist group Boko Haram in 2016 and has since become a dominant threat in Nigeria, attacking troops and bases while killing and kidnapping passengers at bogus checkpoints.

On March 1, jihadist fighters burnt down a United Nations humanitarian compound in the town of Dikwa after dislodging troops, killing six civilians. Nigeria’s jihadist violence has spread to neighbouring Chad, Cameroon and Niger, prompting a regional military coalition to fight the insurgents.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s chief of army staff, Lt-Gen Ibrahim Attahiru, has disclosed that the recent attacks on military bases and the attendant losses of soldiers and equipment will not stop the military from winning the war against the Boko Haram insurgency. He gave the pledge  in Maiduguri, Borno State, when he paid yet another visit to the frontline.

It was the fifth time that the army chief was visiting the state since his appointment in February. The latest visit followed this week’s attack on troops at Mainok village, where major military equipment was destroyed or reportedly stolen by the insurgents.

Attahiru had, upon arrival at the Military Command and Control Centre of Operation Lafiya Dole, held a closed-door meeting with the troops’ commander on recent happenings in the frontline.

Premium Times reports that ‘’Though journalists were, as usual, locked out of the briefing, the Theatre Commander had, in an open remark, commended the army chief for his frequent visit and providing them with all they needed to fight the war.

At the end of the meeting, the COAS told journalists that despite the constant attacks and losses on the side of the troops, he was still impressed with their performance.

He said his recent visit to the frontline was in line with the need to keep constant touch with troops to uplift their fighting spirit. “The constant touch with troops and their commanders in the field is of the essence for every military operation, especially in a counter-insurgency environment,” he said.

“The essence is to reassure the troops, get to hear from them if they do have issues they want us to discuss; it could be that of logistics, it could that of deployment, and then reassure them that Mr President, as the commander in chief, is aware of all they are doing here and he would do his best to provide the needed resources to execute this war to a logical conclusion.

‘This, indeed, is not just this theatre, but any theatre that the Nigerian army is operating.” Gen. Attahiru, a former theatre commander in Borno State, said the recent loss of major military equipment is not out of place in a war situation. “In a military operation, this is a norm,” he said. “We have defeated Boko Haram severally. And if, for one time, they came to attack and we lose some equipment, even though we were never defeated, I can assure you that we will overcome, notwithstanding whatever had happened.

“We will take on Boko Haram decisively, and we are committed to the focus of the entire operation which is of course the total annihilation of Boko Haram from Nigeria.” The army chief later visited the troops’ location at Molai, five kilometres from the main city of Maiduguri, where he addressed the troops.

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