President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday ordered service chiefs to ensure security of lives and property of citizens in all parts of the country.
Specifically, Buhari asked the security chiefs to be on guard and make sure that the unity of the country is not compromised by any group or persons.
The president issued the directive during a security meeting at the presidential villa, the first he had presided over since he returned from his medical vacation
The meeting,as revealed to journalists, was convened by the president with utmost urgency to begin walking the talk on the warning he issued purveyors of hate speech and secession, that his administration will not allow irresponsible elements to start trouble in the country.
Buhari had in a national broadcast on Monday declared that the unity of Nigeria was a settled matter and, therefore, not negotiable, even as he ordered security agencies to destroy terrorists and criminal elements troubling the country so that the rest of the citizens could live in peace and safety.
Speaking to State House correspondents after the meeting, the Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin, said Buhari had told them to protect the unity of the country.
He said, “At the meeting, he directed on some areas we should look at so as to enhance our operations in the country. In his address, he talked about the unity of the nation which is non-negotiable. We have all been fully instructed to ensure that that directive is carried out to the letter”.
On the President’s directive over IPOB’s purported Secret service, the Chief of Defence Staff said “All security threats were treated one after the other, ranging from terrorism to kidnapping, herdsmen/farmers clash to IPOB. Comments were made as to what to do as regards those issues.
“Every security issue, like I said, has been treated and we are going to enhance our operations in all the areas we need to do that. Like I said, he has given the necessary directives which will be carried out by the military and the security agencies”.
Continuing, General Olonisakin said, “he also directed that we must ensure that the life and property of citizens are protected and we must make sure that we secure the whole nation and also that troops that are outside carry out their jobs effectively”.
Asked about the president’s concern over renewed attacks by Boko Haram insurgents, the general noted: “On the Boko Haram issue, you all know it is an asymmetric warfare. It is not that the Boko Haram has stepped up their game, it is just the issue of suicide bombing that has been the problem and of course we are also working with the security agencies and the intelligence agencies to make sure that we address that menace”.
The defence chief disclosed that the meeting in which the service chief took their turns to brief and update the President lasted for about three hours.
Also present at the meeting were the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai; Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Abubakar Sadique; Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris and a representative of the Chief of Naval Staff.
Others were National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno and the Director General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Lawal Daura.
South East Will Get Its Own Fair Share Under PMB- Presidency
Meanwhile, the presidency assured yesterday that the Southeast region will get its own fair share under President Muhammadu Buhari.
Special adviser to the president on media and publicity, Femi Adesina, gave this assurance yesterday when he received a coalition of Southeast youth group who stormed the precinct of Aso Rock presidential villa to declare support for the president.
While assuring that the Southeast will get its dues, Adesina added that the president will do everything possible to keep the nation as an indivisible entity.
He noted that the fact that a coalition from the Southeast region came to mount the solidarity rally for the president was very significant because some mischief makers always say that the Southeast region is not with the president, which is not true.
He said, “On behalf of President Muhammadu Okechukwu Buhari, I receive this letter and I say thank you all. It was in the Southeast region that he was given the name Okechukwu during the campaign; it was in the Southeast in Abia precisely that Eze Ikot Nne gave him a traditional title. So, we know that every part of this country approves the leadership of President Muhammadu Okechukwu Buhari.
“Last week, youths from South-south region were here to also show their solidarity with him. This gives us confidence that no matter what anybody does, no matter the antics of people who plot mischief, Nigeria will remain one.
“You must have heard our president yesterday in his nationwide address when he said whatever it takes Nigeria will be kept together. And I tell you, whatever it takes this president he will keep the country together. Therefore, anybody who is planning something else should know that it is just a mere waste of time. It is like beating a dead horse which is sheer waste of energy. Nigeria will remain one; President Muhammadu Buhari will keep the country together.
“As we speak, he is meeting now with his service chiefs on how to enhance security in the country. You know when there is security there will be development, when there is security you can guarantee that the economy will grow, when there is security we can face our businesses; our businesses can strive. So, whatever it will take to secure the country, President Muhammadu Buhari will do along with other people in government.
While thanking them for their support, Adesina assured the youth group that the letter they brought for the president will get to him, just as all their demands will be communicated to him.
He continued: “And I also want to promise on his behalf that the Southeast will get its due during this time of President Muhammadu Okechukwu Buhari. The roads in the region will be fixed, the second Niger Bridge will be done; everything, infrastructure, positions and offices, all that the center needs to do for the region. The Southeast region will get its own fair share. Thank you very much God be with you all,” he added.
On his part, the leader of the group, Steve Anyata, said they visited to declare support for the Buhari administration.
Anyata condemned in strong terms all actions or expressions that seek to undermine the office of the president and expressed a resounding vote of confidence in the ability and capability of President Buhari to continue to lead the country.
“As a people of our zone, we tacitly affirm without mincing words our belief in one Nigeria and the unity of all its parts put together. Mr. President, it is noteworthy here to inform you that while you were away, a lot took place that would welcome your kind attention. One of those was the quit notice issued to Igbos in Northern Nigeria by a group of Arewa youths, which, given the negative fallouts of such past threats, raised a reason for more than a concern in the polity.
“But we are glad to say that under your vice, professor Yemi Osinbajo, attempts were made to elicit concrete commitments from parties concerned and to douse heightening tensions. We therefore believe that with your return, issues such as we had earlier mentioned will receive your expedited attention and kind attention.
“We call on you to go one with the serious business of leading Nigeria as you undertook to do during your campaign visits to our zone in 2015 and during the presidential inauguration in May that year”.
Osinbajo Tasks Govs On Job Creation Through Agriculture
Meanwhile, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has charged governors to create jobs, using agriculture and agriculture value – chain services.
This was disclosed by Jigawa State governor, Abubakar Badaru and his Kebbi counterpart, Atiku Bagudu, after a meeting with Osinbajo at the presidential villa yesterday.
Badaru said, “The meeting is about job creation using agriculture and Agriculture value- chain; how we will mobilise youths to go into agriculture and agriculatural services, including production, retailing and wholesale.
“There is a new decision that states should endeavour to support the federal government, or be in partnership with the federal government in empowerment, helping the youths in agriculture and Agriculture value-chain”.
On his part, Kebbi State governor said the governors will come out with an action plan in the next couple of weeks to achieve their target.
Bagudu said, “The vice president, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, chaired the meeting as my brother has said. The potential of agriculture has been recognised. Land and people are in the states. Partnership between the federal and state government s will do more and that has been recognised.
“We reviewed progress achieved and what can be done, particularly to create new jobs and we have been charged that all states should see what they can do more so that in the next couple of weeks we will have an action plan.”