Ben Ayade, the Governor of Cross River State, has said that the security situation in Nigeria would have been worse if not for the efforts of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.)
Ayade said this while addressing pressmen after meeting with the President at the Presidential Villa in Abuja on Tuesday.
He commended the president’s understanding of international and local security challenges.
“Let me first acknowledge the depth of knowledge and the depth of the intellect that the president exudes, his master hand understanding of the international and global security challenges and dovetailing into the Nigerian situation, and, what he has done to be able to stem the continuous incursion of bandits and Boko Haram into Nigeria”, Ayade said.
“This country would have been in a worse situation but President Muhammadu Buhari given the fall of Afghanistan, given the massive movement of people who have a feeling that the West African province belongs to them by birth, and therefore Muslims of West African origin, and Christians, in their opinion, are infidels and therefore must be wiped out.
“If President Muhammadu Buhari were not the president, perhaps things could have been worse. I say this with all amount of confidence because I do recall when we used to have bombings even right here in the city of Abuja. The flags that used to adorn most of our northern states as Boko Haram enclaves have all been brought down. This does not stop occasional incidents of attack here and there. Guerrilla war takes 30 to 40 years to end. The Algeria experience is too recent for us to remember.
“Indeed, the collapse of Afghanistan puts a major threat on national security and puts in far more pressure on northern Nigeria with intent by ISWAP to ensure that they conquer West African province.
“So, priority number one is security. And security will be security, which is based on a digital approach to dealing with issues of security. Indeed, wherever you have a challenge in Nigeria, and you put in money, the problem gets bigger. So, we realize that a non-contact intellectual, digital security approach, using the sophisticated international partnership to deal with intelligence gathering, and focusing on the fundamental root causes of this criminality, banditry, kidnapping, and more importantly, terrorism.
“The facts are traceable to two major crises, Boko Haram and ISWAP conflicting in each other, one having its link to Al Qaeda, Boko Haram. And ISIS has a direct relationship with the other group, ISWAP. So, because they have two fundamental sources, where they are at war with each other, it is easy for you to understand the nexus of the security challenge and deal with it and understand the source of all those young men in their thousands that are coming to Nigeria on bikes, trace them to their roots. And I’m willing to take security as a national issue for full discussion I’m the cause of time.”
This is coming just after the Cross Rivers State Governor expressed his intention to contest the presidency on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).