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Boko Haram no longer a serious fighting force, says Osinbajo
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo says Boko Haram is no longer a real fighting force but it is merely feeding off the oxygen of media attention.
This is despite the series of attacks already carried out this year by the terrorist group, including the kidnap of 110 schoolgirls from Dapchi, Yobe State, and an attack on Rann community in Borno State, where three UN aid workers were killed.
“They [Boko Haram] will alter their goals and objectives at random, and are capable of doing anything and everything to continue feeding off the oxygen of media attention,” Osinbajo said during the National Security Seminar that kicked off on Tuesday.
“Yet this should not be interpreted as meaning that we fighting an unwinnable war. We can boldly say that today Boko Haram is no longer a serious fighting force.
“We have to be strategic in our approach, responding not out of panic or fear but out of a determination to secure our nation and keep our people safe not only from terrorism but from every other threat they face.
“We must fight them on multiple fronts, starve them of funding and resources, of sympathisers, and of the oxygen of publicity, especially on the Internet.”
Continuing, he said: “Two weeks ago … suspected Boko Haram terrorists attacked a girls’ secondary school, abducting 110 girls. And then last week, the attacks on a humanitarian camp in Rann in Borno state.
“Both incidents have received widespread condemnation from around the world. They are reminders of the absolute ruthlessness of the enemy – and the fact that it will resort to increasingly desperate and callous moves on our most vulnerable people and places, even as its losses mount. Very often, the campaign of violence is foiled, thankfully.”
Osinbajo pointed out that Nigeria’s ranking in the 2017 Global Terrorism Index showed that deaths as a result of terrorism fell by 80 percent between 2015 and 2016.
“That figure of 80 percent represents countless Boko Haram attacks prevented from happening by the efforts of the Nigerian military. We must never forget that,” he stressed.
“More than ever before, we are mobilizing to ensure that schools in the north-east are kept secure from Boko Haram.”
It is expected that this year’s National Security Seminar will discuss the several other security challenges facing the country aside the Boko Haram insurgency.
Herdsmen killings, kidnapping for ransom and cultist activities have all led to the loss of several lives in various parts of the country so far in 2018.