Abuja - The All Progressives Congress (APC) has called for the formulation of new strategies to fight the Boko Haram terror saying current tactics were not yielding results.
In a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, the party said while procuring modern weapons and other needs for the military, it was important to complement the military campaign against Boko Haram with political, social and economic measures, especially because a sustained military campaign dating back to 2009 had failed to end the crisis.
Mohammed appeared to be referring to reports President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration had appealed for international funds to end the crisis.
“'Between 2010 and 2014, a total of US$14 billion has been allocated for defence, security and the police. This year alone, the total sum is US$4 billion. Now, if US$14 billion has not clipped the wings of Boko Haram in five years, what difference can US$1 billion make if thrown into the crisis in the same old way?” he asked.
"If the Federal Government has not accounted for how it spent US$14 billion allocated to the security, defence and police in the past five years, why should it be given the green light to borrow another US$1 billion? If the said US$14 billion has not done much in upgrading military and security facilities in five years, what impact can US$1 billion suddenly make? These are some of the questions we want the National Assembly to ask before giving the FG the go ahead to plunge Nigeria into another round of external debts."
The opposition party argued relying solely on military might was not enough to defeat insurgency.
“We challenge the PDP-led FG to name places in the world where terrorism was successfully defeated by military means alone. Events in Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Kenya, etc. have show that there is always a limit to the ability of the military to crush insurgency.
"Even with some of the world’s best militaries (USA, UK, France, etc.), terrorism is never successfully defeated militarily. The way to go is effective counter-terrorism, which is about winning hearts and minds, not winning battles.”
The Boko Haram terror has claimed thousands of lives since 2009.
More than 2 000 have died this year. – CAJ News