President Muhammadu Buhari has described the security situation in the northern and central regions as “very, very disturbing”.
Buhari spoke in an interview he granted State House correspondents after joining his family members and some top government officials to observe the Eid El-Kabir prayers inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Buhari also said his regime had done its best as far as fighting members of the Boko Haram sect in the North East and militants in the South-South was concerned.
The President’s claim that he has done his best on insurgency and militancy came two days after insurgents attacked the convoy of the Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum.
The governor was said to be on routine inspection when his convoy was attacked by suspected members of Boko Haram between Baga and Munguno on Wednesday.
On Thursday, multiple explosions from mortars fired by suspected Boko Haram members hit Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, leaving many injured.
But Buhari, who recalled that his regime inherited the security challenges from the previous administration, said he had done his best.
He however knocked security agencies on the current security challenges in the North West and North Central, saying they can do better than what they are currently doing.
The President said, “I want Nigerians to be very conscious of their country and what we inherited when we came in 2015 was Boko Haram – North East and the militants, the South-South. Nigerians know that we have done our best.
“What is coming up in the North West and North Central is very disturbing indeed but I believe the military, the police, and other law enforcement agencies from the report I am getting, I think they could do much better.
“They could do much better, but we are keeping them on the alert all the time to do their duties.”
The President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, later issued a statement quoting Buhari as giving assurances that there would be more resources for the country’s military, police, and other security agencies to deal with the unwanted security situation in some areas of the country.
The statement was titled “President Buhari pledges more resources to deal with ‘very disturbing’ security situation in parts of the country.”
Shehu said while assessing the state of security in the country, the President described the situation, particularly in the North West and the North Central parts of the country as “very disturbing.”
He further quoted Buhari as saying that while much had been achieved, security-wise, from the situation he inherited in 2015, more still needed to be done.
The statement read, “He (the President) said considering the security situation on ground when he came to office, ‘Nigerians know that we have done our best. However, what is coming out of the North West and the North Central is very disturbing.’
“Responding to a specific question on the performance of the service chiefs which recently, he said needed to get better, the President said that the military, the police, and other security agencies are working hard.
“We are making available resources to them to even do better,” he assured, adding that “from the reports I am getting, they could do much better…they could do much better. But we are keeping them on the alert all the time to do their duties.” –
Buhari came to power five years ago promising to defeat Boko Haram Islamists in the north-east, but the insurgency continues.
Ethnic and criminal violence, including kidnappings and cattle raids, is intensifying in the north-west and central regions.
Last week, the senate passed a resolution calling for military chiefs to resign or be sacked over the deteriorating security situation.