The Primate of All Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Most Rev Nicholas Okoh, has insisted that Boko Haram has not been decimated, as being claimed by government, and called on government to take certain steps to document the insurgency problems, so that Nigerians can learn some lessons from it.
“We have not decimated Boko Haram; Boko Haram, if they have been decimated, will not be disturbing people,” he stated.
Speaking at the dedication of the Anglican Diocese of Abuja Bishop’s Court, yesterday,
Okoh warned against plans by government to grant amnesty to repented Boko Haram members, saying it is not the right thing at this moment.
He said: “I don’t know what class, because you know there are many classes of Boko Haram. If they have been screened, one would have expected that there would be a document to say this is why they are fighting, this is their anger, this is what Nigerians have done against them, this is why they have taken up arms against us.
“Without doing all these, we are just rubbing pomade on their faces and tomorrow, another group will rise up and do something nasty and ask for amnesty.”
On the $1billion approved by President Muhammadu Buhari to be released for the purchase of military hardware, the cleric said: “Everybody believes that that amount of money is huge. We are waiting for the weapons to arrive.
“I am not in a position to know whether the money would be used for politics or strictly for weapon importation, but we hope they will do so, because Nigerians are suffering.”
Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, at the same event, faulted the alleged looters’ list recently released by the federal government, urging it to ensure that names of everyone who has looted while in office are included in the list.
Answering questions from journalists at the event, Okowa charged the federal government to be sincere and honest in whatever it is doing, adding that the list should not be limited to only one political party.
He said: “Whatever government is doing, they should ensure that names of every person who has looted in governance is released.
It shouldn’t be limited to any party or done in a manner that Nigerians will begin to have doubts because, looking at the list, you can say it is one-sided and I believe we must be sincere and honest in everything we do and ensure the right thing is done.”
Okowa said there was a high level of insecurity in the country, occasioned by the Boko Haram attacks and Fulani herdsmen/farmers clashes, which have impacted negatively on the economy of farmers, as well as occasional insecurity in the Niger Delta, which was being resolved at the moment.
“It depends on all Nigerians working very closely with the Police and the military authorities and providing information, so that we can bring all these to an end.
“A lot is being done by the states and the federal government, but a lot still needs to be done. Until we begin to engage lots of our youths and reduce the level of unemployment, it will be difficult for us to tackle the problem of insecurity challenge in the country.
“A committee has been set up, but we must have a policy direction that will bring hope to the farmers. If there is no direct policy and the farmers are not able to secure their produce, then there is a problem.”