The African Union Development Agency-New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD) in collaboration with Nigerian Army Resource Centre (NARC) have organised a Two-Day Joint Security Summit on “Terrorism, Insurgency and Incidents of Electoral Violence in Nigeria: The Role of Security Agencies”.
The summit was designed as an intervention strategy to address pressing challenges of the Nigerian Nation on Terrorism, Insurgency and Incidents of Electoral Violence and other prevailing security threats in some parts of the country. It is also in view of the enormous responsibility to ensure peace, security of lives and property and territorial integrity of a nation placed on security agencies in general, that the AUDA-NEPAD in collaboration with the NARC have organised this summit to properly sensitize Nigerians on the need for peaceful elections.
In his keynote address, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Gida Mustapha emphasized that, terrorism, insurgency and electoral violence have been the greatest challenges threatening the achievement of democracy and good governance in Nigeria and Africa at large.
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He pointed out that, these three vices have grave consequences on good governance and economic development in the continent. He also stressed that the challenges have not only increased the number of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Africa but have also led to unquantifiable destruction of essential social services and infrastructure in the North East of Nigeria.
He further explained that, the crisis emanating from terrorism, insurgency and electoral violence negate the desire of African Union Agenda 2063, which expects Africa to be a continent where democratic values, gender equality, justice and rule of law are institutionalized. However, he expressed gratitude to the security and critical stakeholders who have contributed immensely to the successes achieved in degrading the terrorists, insurgency and armed bandits in the country.
Earlier in his Goodwill Message, the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt Gen Tukur Yusuf Buratai described the summit as a very critical aspect of the security challenges confronting the Nation. He said, the theme “Terrorism, Insurgency and Incidents of Electoral Violence in Nigeria: The Role of Security Agencies”, is quite apt and cannot come at a better time than now. He posited that, the incidents, responses and initiatives of the various agencies involved in tackling the challenges require understanding by all the stakeholders for the country to move forward.
He equally highlighted that, the jointly organised security summit by the NEPAD and NARC was entirely conceived and driven by the National Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer, NEPAD, Honourable Princess Gloria Akobundu. He added that her efforts in achieving the organisations’ mandate through the numerous programmes carried out since her assumption of office have enhanced the awareness of the populace on peace and security which is essential for growth and development.
“I will therefore like to commend NEPAD for its strong advocacy for peace, security and safety for all persons in the country which has helped to bring relative peace and economic growth. I also wish to commend the NARC for its laudable efforts towards achieving its core mandates of finding research based solutions to security and defence challenges which has attracted this collaboration with NEPAD”, he said.
Furthermore, the COAS stated that the seminar is a commendable initiative in ensuring that collectively, all the stakeholders are able to formulate strategies to counter the scourge of terrorism, insurgency and electoral violence for peace, security and ultimately the development of the nation. He reiterated that the NA will continue to expend their energy, by paying the supreme price in upholding the sanctity of the territorial integrity of the nation in line with the oath of allegiance we swore to at different points of our lives while joining the Service.
In a relative development, the Chairman, Eminent Panelists on African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) and Founder, Savannah Centre for Democracy, Diplomacy and Development (SCDDD), Prof Ibrahim Gambari used the opportunity to appreciate Mr President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Mohammadu Buhari whom he described as a leader with great vision, for his esteemed determination on diligent implementation of African Union Agenda 2063 and Social Development Goals which are in conformity with his Next Level Agenda and Economic Recovery Growth Plan.
He said that, it is good and very important to note that in the African Union revitalization process, APRM mandate was expanded to include Tracking, Monitoring and Assessing the impact of the implementation of Agenda 2063 and United Nations Agenda 2030 on Socio-Economic Development as well as to provide leadership in its areas of competence. He further, expressed his deep gratitude to the SGF and the NC/CEO AUDA-NEPAD, and the DG NARC, Maj Gen Garba Ayodeji Wahab (rtd) for their tremendous efforts towards the success of the summit.
In her closing remark, the Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer, AUDA-NEPAD Honourable Princess Gloria Akobundu commended the DG NARC Maj Gen Garba Wahab (rtd) for his support, visionary leadership and all his efforts channeled towards the success of the summit. She urged the security agencies to synergize, foster peace and security for the proper development and growth of Nigeria. The highpoint of the summit was the adoption of a Communiqué presented by an Independent Consultant and Conflict Transformation Expert, Dr Dayo Kusa to mark the end of the auspicious occasion.