President Muhamadu Buhari has called for more international assistance in combating terrorism in the Chad Basin, especially in dealing with the threats posed by Boko Haram and Al Qaeda.
Buhari was speaking on Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, where at least 150 world leaders had gathered to deliberate on various international issues.
The president, looking as gaunt as ever, appreciated the efforts of the Apex international institution.
“We thank the Security Council for visiting the countries of the Lake Chad Basin to assess the security situation and humanitarian needs, and for pledging assistance to rebuild lives and livelihoods. Indeed, in Nigeria we are providing relief and humanitarian assistance to millions in camps and those afflicted by terrorism, drought, floods and other natural disasters.”
“In the last year, the international community came together to focus on the need for gender equality, youth empowerment, social inclusion, and the promotion of education, creativity and innovation. The frontiers of good governance, democracy including holding free and fair elections, and enthronement of the rule of law are expanding everywhere, especially in Africa.”
Through our individual national efforts, state institutions are being strengthened to promote accountability, and to combat corruption and asset recovery. These can only be achieved through the international community cooperating and providing critical assistance and material support. We shall also cooperate in addressing the growing transnational crimes such as forced labour, modern day slavery, human trafficking and cybercrime.”
While acknowledging the positive impact of regional cooperation in Africa, Buhari believes there is more to be done.
“These cooperative efforts should be sustained. We must collectively devise strategies and mobilise the required responses to stop fleeing ISIS fighters from mutating and infiltrating into the Sahel and the Lake Chad Basin, where there are insufficient resources and response capacity is weak.”
“This will require strong UN cooperation with regional organisations, such as the African Union, in conflict prevention and management. The UN should continue to take primary leadership of the maintenance of international peace and security by providing, in a predictable and sustainable manner, adequate funding and other enablers to regional initiatives and peacekeeping operations authorized by the Security Council.”
At the UN summit, Buhari also spoke about other issues pertaining to recent international events. These include the plight of the Rohingyas in Myanmar, the Nuclear threat from North Korea, and the war in Yemen.
Some commentators have described the president’s 12 minute speech as brief, bland, and uninspiring, drifting away from the core areas of importance in his country and providing minor comments about international issues.