President Muhammadu Buhari has assured members of the Bring Back Our Girls (#BBOG) group that a Multinational Task Force has outline strategies and tactics to win the war against Boko Haram. Buhari, who met with the group in the Presidential Villa, Abuja, said that the multinational task force put in place by Nigeria and its neighbouring countries would begin operation at the end of July.
“Strategy and tactics have been drawn, multinational task force has been put in place – more or less – with headquarters in N’djamena with a Nigerian General as the Commander and then the troops dedicated by each of the country are to be put in place by the end of the Month.
“And Nigeria I assure you will do its best, because we, as I said, are the battle ground and I will help our neighbours.
“It is paradoxical what the Nigerian military has achieved from Burma to Zaire to Liberia to Sierra Leone to Southern Sudan. But, now Nigeria has to be helped by Niger, Chad and Cameroun. How the mighty have fallen.`
The President praised members of the group for their steadfastness and seriousness in carrying out their activities and said that his administration would never disrupt their ongoing agitation for the release of the Chibok girls. He also assured that observations and criticisms directed at his administration would be accommodated.
“We will do our best to restore the respectability of our country and its institutions. “And with you, your steadfastness, and your seriousness we will allow you to do whatever you can do. “We will accommodate all your observations, especially the negative ones, about the performance of the government and its agencies.
“I thank you very much, madam, for your aggression and your leadership. I assure you I will continue to do my best.“
Buhari described as unfortunate the conflicting reports from security agencies and the immediate past Federal Government concerning the abducted girls, saying that they portrayed the government and its agencies in “very bad light“ both nationally and to the international community.
“It’s unfortunate that the security and Federal Government conflicting report initially presented the government and it’s agencies in a very bad light, both nationally and internationally, because the law enforcement agencies and the government were conflicting each other sometimes within hours or within weeks, that is not very impressive, “ he said.
While applauding the comprehensive presentations of the leaderships of the #BBOG and the Chibok community, the President pledged to look into the various demands of the two groups. He said: “I thank the leader of Chibok Community for the articulated priorities he has drawn about welfare of the families, the communities and rehabilitation of infrastructure.
“I think government should provide these infrastructures as a matter of right.“ Earlier, the Coordinator of the #BBOG, Dr Oby Ezekwesili, demanded public apology from the Federal Government for its failure to provide adequate security that led to the abduction of the Chibok girls. According to her, government should also apologise for its failure to rescue the girls for over 450 days.
She urged the Federal Government to spare no resources in urgently rescuing the 219 Chibok girls as promised by the government at various times. “Our Federal Government has the constitutional duty to give justice to our #ChibokGirls by ensuring their immediate rescue.
“The rescue of our #ChibokGirls will amount to the strongest statement that our government has respect for the sanctity and dignity of every Nigerian life,“ she added.