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Elections: APC, PDP Chieftains Clash Over Boko Haram Insurgence

A chieftain of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) and a member of the party’s Advisory Council, Suleiman Abba, and the spokesperson for the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) presidential campaign council, Sanni Umar, have clashed over the current security situation in the country.

The duo appeared on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily Programme.

Mr Abba claimed that a former Inspector General of Police (IGP) said the security situation in Nigeria has improved, compared to what it was in the last administration.

“It is not surprising, really, to say that insurgency has resurged, and the state of insecurity has returned to what it was maybe prior to 2015. Let’s not forget that Boko Haram attacks were not just for the Northeast, remember the Northwest was affected; even Abuja was also affected.”

He also argued that the military has been able to ‘cage’ Boko Haram.

“They have caged Boko Haram to restricted or to certain areas, and that is why they are the ones suffering most now because they hardly can get to the soft targets we are talking about.

“So, it means the military has achieved one of its greatest purposes to protect the soft targets.”

Linking the security issue to the forthcoming election, Mr Abba said: “Remember in 2015, because of the insurgency, elections had to be postponed for six months. Are there any talks about postponing elections now? Are there any talks about not holding elections in Borno, or Yobe, or Gombe? So, there is no basis for the comparison,” he claimed.

However, the PDP chieftain, Mr Umar, questioned the authenticity of the claims made by his APC counterpart.

“The issue, before the coming of the APC, we are very clear that we were about ending the Boko Haram when the APC came in with their new style which is to mobilise the military department to the borders and yet, it has not even generated any effect.”

“Let me say clearly that the strategies of the Boko Haram have continually changed,” he said. “Initially, the Boko Haram is more or less interested in soft targets; now that they realised that the best way to win the war is to attack the military, they have now re-strategised and they are attacking our military.”

“Once your military is being killed, the strength of the sovereignty of the nation is under threat and once the sovereignty of the nation is under threat, people are vulnerable.”

He also argued that the military is poorly equipped and not adequately trained to tackle the insurgency, insisting that only the emergence of PDP will help the military to conquer Boko Haram.

Boko Haram recently attacked soldiers in Baga, claiming the lives of over 100 security officials.

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