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. We need to do more to counter terrorism – Army

AHMED MARI, MAIDUGURI

Over 20 persons were reported dead, while many others injured when some suicide bombers attacked Dalori 2 Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps and sporadic shooting on farmers by Boko Haram terrorists in Kaleri village of Konduga local government area of Borno state.

.Eight persons including the suicide bombers were, according to a source from the Dalori 2 IDP Camp who does not want his name mentioned said and that the attack started on Sunday night and lasted till Monday, while the shootings took place at strategic farmlands around Kaleri and Alau Dam general area of Konduga.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Victor Isuku, who confirmed the suicide attacks on the affected IDPs Camps and that of the University of Maiduguri, however, said that only the suicide bombers were killed in the foiled suicide attack.

Some hours after the IDP attack, residents of Kaleri community/axis and Alau Dam general area of Konduga,  located about 25 kilometers drive and south east to Maiduguri, said: “Over 15 people mostly farmers were killed in an ambush while working on their farmlands by terrorists on Monday afternoon.

A resident, Mallam Abor Konduga told our Correspondent on telephone that some suspected members of Boko Haram armed with AK47 rifles ambushed farmers in various farmlands and killed over 15 people, with several others sustained gunshot injuries.

He said “as we speak, we have lots three of our community people who went to their nearby farms in the attacks, while we also learnt that more farmers in surrounding villages were killed and injured yet to be evacuated”.

A security source who did not want his name in print confirmed that a group of wood fetchers within Yabal forest of Konduga general area were attacked by suspected fleeing Boko Haram terrorists’ elements but declined to mention how many people, farmers or wood fetchers were killed.

On the attacks in IDP camps of Dalori, the Borno State Police Command in a statement signed by its spokesman, Victor Isuku said, “Yesterday 23/7/2017, at about 2115hrs, a suspected female Boko Haram terrorist took advantage of the darkness of night and attempted to gain access into Dalori 2 IDP camp through the rear perimeter fence. Fortunately, she was sighted by vigilant security personnel on duty and chased away.
“In an attempt to escape arrest, she hurriedly detonated the IED strapped to her body, killing herself alone. The impact of the explosion destroyed a portion of the IDP camp fence.
“Similarly, in the early hours of today 24/7/2017, at about 0400hrs, a male suicide bomber attempted to gain entry into the premises of University of Maiduguri.
“On sighting the presence of security personnel deployed to the University on duty, he hurriedly detonated his IED, killing himself alone near the BOT building.
“Both scenes were visited by police EOD teams to sanitize and render the environs safe. Meanwhile security vigilance has been beefed up at these general areas to continue to avert further suicide bomb attacks”. Isuku stated.
These renewed attacks were coming barely 24 hours when the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai gave an order to military authorities of ‘Operation Lafiya Dole’ in the north east to produce leader of Boko Haram, Abubakar Shekau dead or alive in the next 40 days.

Meanwhile, Maj.-Gen. Johnny Hammakim, the Director-General of the Nigerian Army Resource Centre has said more still needed to be done to check violent extremism in the country even though Boko Haram has been degraded.

Hammakim said this on Monday when he declared open a four-day course on “Leadership in Counter Terrorism and Counter Violent Extremism’’ for senior military officers, police, para-military personnel and other stakeholders.

The course is organised by the resource centre in collaboration with the Peace Building Development Foundation (PBDF).

Hammakim described terrorism as a dynamic challenge where various issues come up every day.

“The ability to identify those issues and educate these stakeholders is very important that is why we are organising this course,’’ he said.

He also noted that as terrorist groups globally cooperate to carry out their nefarious activities, there was the need to plan ahead in countering them.

Mr Kayode Bolaji, the Executive Director of PBDF, who spoke to newsmen shortly after the opening of the workshop, said there was the need for Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) to synergise with security agencies in combating terrorism and violent extremism.

According to Bolaji, at the root of violent extremism is human insecurity.

“People will protest when their basic rights are tampered with, they will protest when they lack food and employment.

“So, we decide to bring agencies, MDAs, CSOs, academics and donour agencies to educate us to be able to have synergy in countering violent extremism,’’ he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that resource persons drawn from the academia, CSOs as well as serving and retired military personnel are expected to make presentations at the training.

For a better society

OBIORA IFOH, Abuja

A new political group, the Coalition for a New Nigeria (CNN) has emerged with a common agenda to field a consensus candidate in the presidential election in 2019.

The coalition comprising of 15 registered political parties in the country said they met and resolved to work together in order to chat a positive course for a new Nigeria.

The political parties include, Labour Party, Alliance for Democracy(AD), Democratic Peoples  Congress (DPC), Action Alliance (AA), Progressives Peoples Alliance (PPA), Young Democratic Parry ,(YDP); Democratic Alternative (DA) and National Conscience Party (NCP).

Others are People for Democratic Change (PDC), United Democratic Party (UDP) and National Action Congress (NAC).

Speaking on the coalition’s plan for the 2019 presidential election, the chairman of CNN and the national chairman of the Labour Party, Alhaji Abdulkadir Abdulsalam said they would galvanize their energies and efforts to ensure that its common candidate emerge victorious at the election.

“After several consultations and cordial discussions on the political and economic situation of the country, we the following political parties to be known and addressed as Coalition for a New Nigeria to chat a positive course for a new Nigeria,” he said.

Another member of the coalition and the National Chairman of the Democratic People’s Congress (DPC), Mr. Olusegun Peters said that intention of the coalition is to field a consensus candidate for the next presidential election.

“This coalition have been working and strategizing for three months to see how we can run a successful government in Nigeria to effect the real change in the country. We are working on how to present a credible presidential candidate for the 2019 general election. So we are not working in collaboration with either the APC or the PDP but this coalition will present a credible presidential candidate for Nigerians in the next election, ” he said.

On whether the coalition would later metamorphose into a merger, Abdulsalam said ” it will remain a coalition and we are not contemplating a merger, each party remains independent and autonomous and like I said they are to come together as collectives to support a new government in 2019 at the centre”.

He said that coalition is committed to pursuing economic, political and internal restructuring of Nigeria, empowerment of youths, women and persons with disability.

He also stated that the body would strive to respect the rule of law, protection of democratic institutions so as to build a nation of great dreams “where equity and justice shall be the guiding principle”.

For a better society

Buhari writes Guinean President from London, says he’s Making Progress

President Muhammadu Buhari has written to thank the President of Guinea, Alpha Conde, for the nationwide prayers held last week by Guineans for his recovery and good health.This is stated in a press release issued by Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity on Tuesday.

In a letter dated July 24, 2017, President Buhari, who had earlier made a phone call to Conde, who is the current Chairman of the Assemblies of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, stated:

“I thank you for your kind and thoughtful action in organizing nationwide prayers for my good health. It is a gesture that I will forever cherish and treasure.

“Your Excellency will be pleased to hear that I am making good progress, and as soon as doctors advise, I shall return to my duties and continue serving the Nigerian people who elected me and are daily praying for my recovery.”

In an earlier letter, President Buhari had also accepted his nomination as leader of the “2018 AU Theme on the Fight Against Corruption”, which came from African leaders at the 29th Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the AU in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on July 4, 2017.

“While thanking you for the kind words and for the nomination,” the President wrote to Conde, “I wish to express my readiness to accept this new important role and to reiterate my commitment to contribute towards our collective efforts to strengthen good governance and development on the continent. I, therefore, look forward to working closely with you in the realization of this objective.”

For a better society

Air Force apologises over Rann IDP camp bombing

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF), has expressed regret over the misdirected bombing of Rann Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp early this year. The incident resulted in the death of over 100 people. The NAF’s apology is coming less than a week after the Defence Headquarters(DHQ),had blamed the incident on the failure of the concerned authority to designate the IDPs camp as such.

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