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Governors may employ foreign mercenaries to fight terrorists – El Rufai

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NIGERIAN governors may employ foreign mercenaries to fight terrorists if the Federal Government does not take prompt action.

Kaduna State governor Nasir El Rufai gave the hint while speaking to journalists after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House, Abuja, on Friday.

El Rufai, whose state is currently under attack by terrorists, said governors are ready to take necessary steps to protect their people.


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“I have complained to Mr President, and I swear to God if action is not taken, we as governors will take actions to protect the lives of our people.

“If it means deploying foreign mercenaries to come and do the work, we will do it to address these challenges,” he said.

It was reported that foreign mercenaries were hired by the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan to fight Boko Haram in 2015.

At the time, the Federal Government denied the reports, saying friendly countries had offered Nigeria some assistance in the fight against Boko Haram.

Buhari had criticised the employment of foreign mercenaries and, upon assumption of office as president, brought an end to the practice.

However, the fight against terrorism is yet to be won, and states in Northern Nigeria have remained targets of terror attacks.

Recently, there has been an upsurge in terror attacks in Kaduna State, with the transport sector being the major target in the past week.

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On Monday, a train travelling from Abuja to Kaduna was attacked by terrorists, leaving several passengers dead and injured and many others still unaccounted for.

The international airport and a train station in the state were also attacked by terrorists this past week.

El-Rufai, also speaking on the incidents, said the best way to end terrorism in the country was to blow up forests where the terrorists reside.

“I have been saying that the forests where these bandits are hiding, it is high time we go and bomb them all.

“Everyone in the forest should be killed. Unless this is done, this problem will persist, and it is capable of destroying Nigeria as a whole.

“We know where they are, SSS gives reports on them everyday. They have their numbers including that of Dogo Gide what he is planning,” the governor said.

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Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via vopara@icirnigeria.org

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