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BOKO HARAM: 140 KILLED IN 138 ATTACKS -ARMY CHIEF

By NBF News
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Chief of Army Staff, Lt General Azubuike Ihejirika, made the disclosure in Abuja, while delivering a lecture on the topic: 'National security: Implications for Nigeria's Development' to mark the 10th anniversary of the News World magazine and one year anniversary of the Nigerian Pilot newspapers.

Represented by the Deputy Commandant of the National Defence College (NDC), Major General Femi Adeosun, Ihejirika said that the violent attacks by Boko Haram, on both public and private targets, have left the country with so much devastating effects.

He said: 'The spread of violent attacks by the sect on public and non-public targets and the level of casualties have had far devastating effects and disrupted economic activities in the North-East as much as the ethno-religious crisis in Jos area.

'Between the year 2010 and 2011, the Boko Haram sect carried out 138 attacks, killing about 140 people. Their activities are in the forms of assassination, bank robberies, motorcycle attacks, attack on military convoys, roadside bombings and the use of Improvised Explosive Devices. The latest dimension, is the introduction of suicide bombings as witnessed in the 26 August bombing of the United Nations House in Abuja, in which 23 innocent people lost their lives.

He pointed out that the activities of this sect and other crises constituted a cogent threat to national security, stating that a holistic assessment of the threats on to Nigeria's national security showed that many of them are underpinned by political factors.

Stating that the pervasive nature of social problems, bordering on corruption and bad governance, has made the country to witness this extent of violence and destructions, he said: 'Until these causes are addressed, the domestic threat of terrorism, kidnapping, violent crimes and ethno-religious crisis are unlikely to abate, despite their implications on the development of this country.'

Stating that the military was confronting the insecurity in the country headlong, with a view to resolving it he, however, admitted that the tactics and modus operandi of the sect were deceptive and required high-level intelligence to tackle them.

In his lecture on the topic: 'Leadership Challenges and Development in Nigeria,' Bishop Kukah said that what is considered as Boko Haram is 'an indictment on the process,' adding: 'We must, therefore, have the courage to ask, what are we doing wrong, because we cannot be the most insecure country.

'We are not the only country that has Moslems; there are Moslems in Ghana, there are Moslems in Gambia, there are Moslems in Senegal. So what is specific about the character of our own Moslems?

The bishop said: 'It is bad governance that has produced insecurity. Amid of suffering, the president says he's going to remove the fuel subsidy then you now tell us we cannot grow in an environment of insecurity. We have not secured one single mile of railway that we can boast of, meanwhile our roads are still in the state of confusion, meanwhile social security itself, the entire architecture is collapsing, meanwhile we are hearing of governors and governments removing ghost workers.

'Of course, those of us who are part of it are celebrating but there are no ghost husbands and there are no ghost fathers, because each and everyone of those ghost workers whatever you may call them, the fact that he has now been asked to leave his job, plunges his family in hunger.'

Regretting that the country had failed because of bad and corrupt leadership, the cleric insisted that several persons have emerged as presidents and other strategic leaders in the country 'came in to power through Parachute.'