International

Nigeria : President Buhari Expresses Security Worries

During a rare interview, the Nigerian President said the security forces could do much better in their efforts to keep the country safe.


Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has described the situation in northern and central regions of the country as “very, very disturbing”. Mr Buhari was speaking during an interview he granted the national and international press on Friday, July 31, 2020.  “I believe the military, the police and other law enforcement agencies, from the reports I am getting, I think they can do much better,” he is quoted by the AFP news agency as saying.
Mr Buhari’s declaration comes on the heels of several explosions in Nigeria's north-eastern city of Maiduguri that left at least three people dead and six injured on Thursday. Bello Danbatta, the head of security for Borno state's Emergency Management Agency, said that four rocket-propelled explosives were fired from outside the city, landing on separate sites. Nigerian security expert Bulama Bukarti said if these were used, it indicates a worrying sophistication in the group's capacity. 
Though the armed force Chief Tukur Buratai said he was “proud” that Nigerians “are living in peace, and Nigeria is safer now than five years ago”, the security situation in Nigeria's north-east remains challenging. Earlier last week Borno's governor came under attack in Baga town, after visiting one of the military's "super camp" bases. 
Mr Buhari came to power five years ago promising to defeat Boko Haram Islamists in the north-east, but the insurgency continues. Ethnic and criminal violence, including kidnappings and cattle raids, is intensifying in the north-west and central regions. Last week, the Senate passed a resolution calling for military chiefs to resign or be sacked over the deteriorating security situation and an official investigation after a newspaper reported that 356 soldiers had asked “for voluntary retirement” early this month because of poor conditions and high risks. President Muhammadu Buhari’s military chiefs have been in office since 2015 and have seen the worst turn in the security architecture of the country. Despite the escalating situation, President Buhari has not heeded to a number of calls to reform the military.
 

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