President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered security operatives to rescue of all kidnapped persons unhurt, using the train attack in Kaduna as a fulcrum.

National Security Adviser (NSA), Major-General Babagana Monguno (retd), disclosed this to newsmen after the security council meeting held at the State House, Abuja, on Thursday. Briefing correspondents after the three-and-a-half-hour meeting presided over by the president, Monguno said Buhari cannot be happy when people are being killed on a daily basis.

According to him, the last straw was the recent attack on the Abuja-Kaduna train leading to the death of some passengers with scores kidnapped.

He said, “Mr President has directed all the operational and intelligence elements to rescue these innocent people immediately and unhurt.

This is the basis on which other issues were discussed. “Obviously, the Chief of Defence Staff and the service chiefs, as well as the Inspector-General of Police, all briefed the president on the occurrences in their respective organisations.”

He added: “A lot of lives are being lost. The president is not happy about this situation. He has made it very clear. The first assignment he’s given to the security agencies, especially the armed forces and the police, is to rescue those that are in captivity, not just those that were captured during the last train incident, but those that have been in captivity in other parts of the country. That is the first thing that has to be done.”

Monguno stated that the president alone cannot completely receive the blame for the insecurity in the country as his part is to make strategic decisions.

He added that the surrendering of Boko Haram elements has not engendered the desired result in stemming insurgency in the country.
Monguno remarked: “Now, the issue in the North-East, there’s been a lot of improvement and that has been attested to by the governor of Borno State during the last National Council of State meeting.

“But nevertheless, the fact that the North-East is becoming much more stable, with more and more terrorists surrendering to government, has not really brought to an end the way we would want the situation in the country, because the threat is now shifted from the North-East to the North-West and to the North-Central, and this threat has to be contained.

“It has to be contained collectively by both the armed forces as well as the constabulary forces; the Nigerian Police Force, civil defence and the intelligence agencies also have been directed to enhance the acquisition of intelligence.”

The NSA also spoke on the threats coming from the country’s vast land borders and the need to replicate in them what has been achieved in the maritime borders.

“In terms of securing the nation, we’ve recorded a lot of successes in the maritime domain and obviously, the problem now has shifted to our borders from outside. As a result of that, there’s a need for us to configure how we’re going to make our borders more secure because of the threats coming from outside the borders,” he said.

He also stressed the imperative of intelligence from ordinary citizens as he noted that unless the wider society is willing to provide the necessary intelligence, the problem of insecurity will linger beyond the time frame intended to end menace.
In his remarks, the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba Alkali, said the force is working towards changing the narrative on security to enable a peaceful conduct of all the elections ahead.



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