New strategies against Boko Haram hailedBy GIFT NDOLWANE
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) -A LEADING global security think-tank is confident measures taken by the Nigerian administration and some countries in the region will eventually eliminate the Boko Haram sect.
Recent breakthroughs by the military against the insurgents have spurred such projections by the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), the South African-based think-tank.
In a security update David Zounmenou, Senior Research Fellow, ISS Pretoria, and Segun Rotimi Adeyemon, a Nigerian post-graduate scholar, wrote for ISS, it was noted that Buhari had undertaken a number of reforms to improve Nigeria’s counter-terrorism strategy.
He relocated the army command centre to Maiduguri, the birth place of Boko Haram and the epicentre of the crisis, brought about key changes in the military hierarchy, and instructed security forces to destroy Boko Haram within 90 days.
“This is an ambitious timeframe but displays Nigerian authorities’ resolve to end the reign of terror,” the experts said.
Regional efforts to set up a Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) of 8 700 troops from Nigeria, Chad, Cameroon, Niger and Benin present an opportunity for an effective offensive against Boko Haram.
Headquartered in N’Djamena in Chad and under Nigeria’s command, the MNJTF will complete the operation launched in February and enable a regional response to terrorism.
“This is welcome, but other measures are also needed.”
They said rumours about Abubakar Shekau’s death could deal a blow to the morale of the militant group and give armed forces fighting Boko Haram a confidence boost.
Nonetheless, the ISS experts said eliminating terror required a coherent and comprehensive approach by all stakeholders and security agencies, along with better laws and intelligence, well-equipped and trained armed forces, and unwavering political commitment.
Border control needs to be more effective, and the flow of funds and weapons to Boko Haram must be stopped.
“A multi-pronged approach is needed and Nigeria must display leadership in this regard,” Zounmenou and Adeyemon said.
The Boko Haram terror has caused untold destruction in the Northeast where some 13 000 people have been killed and 2 million displaced.
– CAJ News
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