Olonisakin Lauded for Nigeria’s Declining Terror Deaths

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Major-General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin - Chief of Defence Staff. PHOTO; SUNDAY AGHAEZE.

Sunday Okobi

Concerned Professionals Congress (CPC) has lauded the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Abayomi Gabriel Olonisakin, over the just-released 2017 Global Terrorism Index of the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP) which revealed that the Nigerian military’s ongoing counter-terrorism strategy has recorded the largest global decrease in terrorism-related deaths.

Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed had, in a statement last week in Abuja expressed federal government delight at the report which he described as another proof of the Nigerian military’s successfully-sustained prosecution of the anti-terror war under what he called the visionary and dogged leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari.

The group in a statement made available to THISDAY in Lagos yesterday by its Chief Media Strategist, Mr. Emeka Nwankpa and the North East Regional Rapporteur, Malam Baba Al-Kasim, said the report was a fitting reward for the renowned resolve and resilience of the Olonisakin-led Nigeria military in driving the national strategic defence policy towards achieving robust inter-agency cooperation among the armed services and other security agencies employing synergy, intelligence and information-sharing to end the war against terror.

According to the statement, “It is note-worthy that the report showed that terrorism deaths caused by Boko Haram dropped by 80 per cent in 2016, recalling that Sambisa Forest, Boko Haram’s dreaded stronghold, fell on December 22.

“The trend showed that Nigeria, compared in 2015 with Afghanistan, Pakistan and Syria which were most endangered by terrorism, recorded 33 per cent fewer deaths thereby depleting the scourge of terror-related deaths with a 13 per cent year-on-year decline in two successive years. This is assuring.”

CPC described as valid comments by the Executive Chairman of the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), Mr. Steve Killelea, who said: “The decline of Boko Haram in Nigeria is having a positive ripple effect with Cameroon, Chad and Niger collectively recording 75 per cent fewer deaths,” noting that the progress made by Nigeria in the fight against terrorism since President Buhari assumed office in 2015 is phenomenal.

Nwankpa observed that Nigeria’s novel counter-terrorism strategy had helped to defeat Boko Haram terrorists in the North-east region which he said prompted a visit early this year by a high-powered study group from the prestigious Royal College of Defence Studies in the United Kingdom to the Defence Headquarters in Abuja.

He said Nigeria’s positive contributions to global peace and security is increasingly being appreciated globally, courtesy of President Buhari’s zeal, the president who he said carefully selected highly professional, committed and patriotic service chiefs led by the CDS, Olonisakin.

The group further noted that the CDS-led team had left none in doubt about Nigeria’s role as a leading military force in Africa and the sub-region manifested in the victory over terrorism and insurgency in the country thereby reducing some of the world’s most endemic security challenges to global peace and order.

“The Nigerian military under Olonisakin and the service chiefs has used synergy, intelligence and information sharing to secure and stabilise the country in the manner it has tackled national security threats particularly terrorism and insurgency,” Nwankpa said in an emailed statement.