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'Buhari has every reason to celebrate 100 days in office'

07 September 2015, 10:05

President - Muhammadu Buhari has every reason to celebrate 100 days at the helm of the country, a leading security think-tank has said.

The South African-based Institute for Security Studies (ISS) noted the breakthroughs, despite some challenges, his administration had made in the fight against the menace in recent months.

“Despite these challenges, there is every reason for Buhari to celebrate his 100 days at the helm of Aso Rock,” Martin Ewi, Senior Researcher, Transnational Threats and International Crime division at ISS.

He spoke ahead of Saturday when Buhari’s marks 100 days at the helm of Africa’s most populous country and biggest economy.

Ewi noted positive development to include the military rescuing the majority of the women and girls that Amnesty International estimated had been kidnapped or abducted by Boko Haram.

Additional towns and villages have been retaken, including the recent liberation of Gamboru Ngala, a strategic town bordering Cameroon.

“This is good news, but these recent successes create a false impression that Boko Haram has been incapacitated and are on the verge of defeat.”

He nonetheless said in the past, when Boko Haram appeared frail and defeated, it has always bounced back re-energised and more deadly.

“Buhari should avoid the same mistakes of the previous administration that issued numerous timelines to defeat Boko Haram but never met any of them.
Such unfulfilled promises cost the previous administration dearly,” Ewi said.

He said the “litmus test” for Buhari’s administration remains the liberation of the 219 Chibok schoolgirls believed to be in Boko Haram’s captivity.

“In this regard, the president however, seems to be implementing the same strategy as his predecessor, relying heavily on the military,” said Ewi.

Also read: Buhari gets mixed report for first 100 days

“A new approach, which focuses on a criminal justice response, implementing the 2011 Terrorism Prevention Act and establishing special courts or tribunals mandated to investigate and prosecute acts of terror, might help Buhari in his quest to ultimately defeat Boko Haram.”

ISS noted since Buhari’s inauguration on 29 May, Boko Haram has intensified its attacks in Nigeria in a bid to intimidate the new president and force his hand.

According to data compiled by the ISS on reported major terrorist incidents in Africa, Boko Haram has carried out more than 200 attacks as at 31 August, claiming over 5 000 lives in the four Lake Chad Basin countries – Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger.

Despite the expansion of the group’s attacks to the three other countries, Nigeria continues to be the principal target. Of the 200 attacks this year, 141 (70 percent) have occurred in Nigeria, which accounts for 4 233 deaths (85 percent) of total deaths recorded so far.

- CAJ News


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