President Muhammadu Buhari wants a more drastic effort in tackling the insurgency in Nigeria's northeast, extending to Lake Chad Basin. 

He has summoned another Extraordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) to address this prevailing security challenges in the sub-region.

President Buhari said the meeting, which is a follow up to a similar one held in N’djamena, the Chadian capital in November, was convened for the adoption of a report of the LCBC security and defence committee on the Boko Haram insurgency.

The summit was held in Abuja, Nigeria's capital, with the leaders of Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger Republic in attendance. 

According to the Nigerian leader, time has come for the evil of Boko Haram to be brought to a definitive end.

He expressed the hope that the Saturday’s summit would take the right decisions in this regard.

“This is a fight to the finish. We must, and we will, by the grace of God, wipe out terrorism from our sub-region.

The president observed that their participation in Saturday’s summit was a clear demonstration of the collective resolute commitment of the sub-region to the fight against the common enemy, Boko Haram, and the restoration of durable peace and security to the sub-region.

He said: “Your Excellencies would recall that during our Summit in N’Djamena, the need to overhaul our current strategy and concept of operations in the fight against the Boko Haram Terrorists took the centre stage of our discussions.

“This was necessitated by the resurgence of attacks, particularly on the military, and the abduction of civilians for ransom across our borders by Boko Haram with the support of international terrorists who have infiltrated our sub-region.

“Our meeting today will consider the report of the Committee we set up during our last Summit on the way forward".

President Buhari thanked the Committee for meeting the deadline assigned to it and expressed the hope that their recommendations will bring a new dynamism in the fight against Boko Haram and their international affiliates.

He noted that the Lake Chad region had suffered decades of neglect and poor infrastructural development, saying that the Boko Haram crisis in the last eight years had worsened its already bad situation.

“We must take cognisance of the fact that sustainable growth and development of the sub-region is dependent on the quick attainment of peace and stability in the area.

Muhammadu Buhari at the Lake Chad Basin Commission

President Muhammadu Buhari, Chadian President Idris Deby Itno and Prime Minister of Cameroon Philemon Yang 

“We must put an end to the crisis in the sub-region to enable meaningful development for its people.

“We must remain resolute and committed in our collective efforts at attaining peace as well as eradicating terrorism and violent extremism from the sub-region.

"The time has come for the evil of Boko Haram to be brought to a definitive end. I am sure that this summit will take the right decisions in this regard.

“This is a fight to the finish. We must, and we will, by the grace of God, wipe out terrorism from our sub-region,’’ he added.

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The Nigerian President maintained that while executing the war against the Boko Haram terrorists, “we must not be oblivious of the fact that military may not provide the desired results alone.’’

According to the Nigerian leader there is the pressing need to pursue simultaneously both military and developmental approach to the challenges of the region.

He said the regional leaders must work towards strengthening of civil-military cooperation in the fragile areas of the region to accelerate the implementation of the Regional Stabilisation Strategy.

“Our military strategy must be complemented by the mobilisation and deployment of adequate resources to ensure the reconstruction, rehabilitation and rebuilding of civil authority, as well as the provision of relief and succour for the affected.

“The Inter Basin Water Transfer project to recharge the disappearing Lake Chad would also go a long way in the restoration of sustainable peace and security to these areas.

President Buhari then paid tribute to the gallant troops who remained focused and committed to the task of ensuring the safety and stability of the region.

He urged them to remain steadfast in executing the war with the highest sense of honor, professionalism and patriotism.

He lauded the efforts of partners and the larger international community for their valuable support and contributions in helping with the resultant humanitarian crisis.

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