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Insecurity: Chinese high-level security experts coming to help Nigeria

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A HIGH-LEVEL delegation of Chinese security experts is expected in Nigeria to help tackle insecurity in the West African country.

Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria Cui Jianchun announced the imminent arrival of the delegation in Nigeria on December 15 in Abuja.

An upsurge in terrorism and insurgency, banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery, cultism and violent agitation for self determination in parts of the country is hurting the country.

A private data consulting agency, Statisense, on December 16, reported that at least 32 persons were killed by bandits every day between January and June 2021.

Quoting data from the Nigeria Security Tracker, Statisense said there were 5,800 deaths and 2,943 incidents of kidnapping between January and June 2021 – a figure which is approximately 32 deaths and 17 abductions per day.

Also, in the South-East, where the agitation for Biafra has taken a violent turn, about 300 people, including security agents, were reportedly killed between January and October.

China is worried over insecurity in Nigeria, especially its possible effect on Chinese nationals in the country, the envoy Cui said.

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To help resolve the problem, Cui said the Chinese government had decided to send security experts to Nigeria.

Cui said, “China’s Central Government is really concerned about the security situation in Nigeria and also the Chinese nationals in Nigeria. We are working hard on how we can get support from China.

“I think that it really concerns every Nigerian and I believe this is not only about the Nigerian people and government but also, we need international support.

“So now the Central Government made the decision to send a high-level delegation from the criminal investigation experts with real experience.

“They come to Nigeria and get to talk to the people, the government, how can they find a way to work together to overcome the challenge they are facing.”

The offer of assistance from China is coming on the heels of the declaration by former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo that Buhari had nothing more to offer in addressing insecurity and other challenges in the country.

Addressing journalists at his residence in Abeokuta, Ogun State, on December 12, Obasanjo said: “President Buhari has done his best. That is what he can do. If we are expecting anything more than what he has done or what he is doing, that means we are whipping a dead horse and there is no need.”

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The Buhari administration reacted to the former president’s comments with a claim that it had done a lot to address insecurity in the country.

Minister of Information and Culture Lai Mohammed, who spoke at a press briefing on December 15 in Abuja, said Buhari had done more than previous Nigerian presidents in tackling insecurity.

The minister said, “President Buhari has done so much, under very difficult economic and social conditions, to tackle insecurity in our country. Not only has he done so much. President Buhari continues to do much more to keep Nigerians safe. To say he has nothing more to offer is untrue, fallacious, and smacks of dirty politicking.”

According to the minister, Buhari had boosted the number and capacity of Nigerian soldiers, thereby putting them in good stead to tackle insecurity not just during the life of his administration but long after he would have left office.

“No administration in Nigeria’s recent history has provided the security agencies with the hardware needed to tackle insecurity as that of President Buhari,” Mohammed added.

Even as scores of Nigerians continue to be killed daily across the country, Mohammed said the situation would have been worse if not for Buhari’s efforts.

“Today, we only look at the current situation, without wondering what would have been had this president not taken the bull by the horns, as far as security is concerned.

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“Yes, banditry and kidnapping have added to the state of insecurity, President Buhari has also continued to provide quality leadership in order to ensure that our security agencies decisively tackle the cankerworm of insecurity of any hue,” the minister said.

Downplaying the level of insecurity in Nigeria, Mohammed also observed that advanced countries such as the United States equally have security challenges.

However, the Committee for Goodness of Nigeria – a political pressure group co-convened by former president Olusegun Obasanjo, former military head of state Abdulsalami Abubakar, Sultan of Sokoto Saad Abubakar and Archbishop of Abuja John Onaiyekan – on December 15 asked Buhari to put in more effort in tackling insecurity in Nigeria.

Reacting to Mohammed’s comments, a member of the Committee for Goodness of Nigeria, Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, said, “It is very little consolation for Nigerians to say there is insecurity in the United States and other countries – the evidence of insecurity in Nigeria is out there in the streets. The government should do more.”

Warning that Nigeria was fast degenerating into a land of lawlessness, the group asked Buhari to take urgent action, including constitutional reforms, to prevent the situation from consuming the entire country.

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