Sunday, June 14, 2015

Boko Haram : Buhari orders release of $21million to task force

President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday said he had directed that $21m, out of the pledge of $100m which Nigeria made to the Multinational Joint Task Force, be released within the next one week.

Buhari disclosed this while chairing a meeting of the African Union Peace Security Council at the ongoing 25th AU Summit in Johannesburg, South Africa.

He said he gave the directive based on the decision of the recent extra ordinary summit of the Lake Chad Basin Commission and Benin that $30m should be immediately made available to the MNJTF, which is saddled with the responsibility of fighting the Boko Haram terrorist group.

The President said although, the Boko Haram sect had extended its menace to Nigeria’s neighbours, its activities were not limited to them as terrorism is a global phenomenon.

He said the global nature of terror required all countries to act in brotherhood and partnership and wage war against agents of evil.

He said, “I am pleased to note that Cameroon, Chad and Niger are already showing this attribute by fighting alongside Nigeria under the umbrella of Multinational Joint Task Force to defeat Boko Haram.

“In this regard, the member countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission and Benin met recently where far-reaching decisions were taken to immediately put into operations the Multinational Joint Task Force.

“To this end, the summit approved the immediate provision of $30m for the Multinational Joint Task Force.

“Consequently, out of the pledge of $100m, which Nigeria made to the Multinational Joint Task Force, I have directed that $21m be released within the next one week.”

He regretted that the continent was inundated with conflicts of diverse forms, including the crisis in Burkina Faso, Mali, Libya, Central Africa Republic, South Sudan, and more recently in Burundi.

On the crisis in South Sudan and Burundi, Buhari regretted that the people were suffering while their political leaders were busy bickering.

He stressed the need for leaders to always place the interest of their countries above narrow and personal interest.

He expressed the hope that the PSC would come out with a united message to call on all parties to act in the interest of their people and the entire continent.

Calling for a change of the face of Africa, Buhari said leaders must deliver a continent “that is at peace with itself, prosperous, a global partner and a democratic showcase.”

He however doubted the possibility of achieving the desired peace by 2020 as earlier planned by African leaders.

“As you are aware in 2013, during the 50th anniversary celebration of our union, we, as African leaders, committed ourselves to the objective of silencing the local guns in Africa by 2020.

“With just five years remaining, the prospect of realising this objective looks doubtful with pockets of violence in individual countries and the continent as a whole,” he said.


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