Insecurity: Fed Govt dismisses claims it’s overwhelmed

The Federal Government yesterday debunked insinuations that government had been overwhelmed by persisting insecurity.

Information and Culture Minister Lai Mohammed, who said this while addressing State House correspondents, presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja, explained that terrorists who attacked a military base at Birnin-Gwari in Kaduna State on Sunday were successfully repelled and that many of them were neutralised.

There were reports on Tuesday about the attack, which was said to have claimed between 11 and 17 soldiers as well as three vigilantes.

Some military equipment, including two armoured personnel carriers (APCs), were also said to have been destroyed by the invading terrorists.

Mohammed said the details of the casualties suffered by the terrorists on Sunday were unavailable in the public space because the military have not been displaying details of their successes in the war against terrorism in the media.

He blamed the media for providing oxygen for terrorists by publishing their activities.

“But clearly the last three, four, five days, the military recorded massive victories against terrorists and bandits, either in the Northeast or in the Kaduna, Niger axis.

“I know that on Monday, there was a very successful aerial interjection where scores, if not hundreds, of bandits/terrorists were eliminated. Even when we’re able to identify where the bandits are, sometimes, out of fear of collateral damage to the innocent civilians, you choose the time you want to strike.

“But I just want to assure you that the administration is not unmindful of your anxieties and your concerns. But probably because we are in charge, we can assure you that there’s really, really no cause to feel that the government is overwhelmed, not at all. We are not overwhelmed. The last few days, I think, have confirmed that.

“Unfortunately, when we inflict these victories on the bandits for many reasons, we do not come out and say we have killed so many because it’s continuous. But very soon, Nigerians will feel the impact of these victories,” he said.

The minister blamed the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for laying the foundation for the currently hunger in the land.

Also, the FEC approved N36.1 billion for Keffi-Nasarawa-Toto Road in Nasarawa State.

Works and Housing Minister Babatunde Fashola told State House correspondents that the council approved the contract for the rehabilitation of 118.9 Keffi-Nasarawa-Toto Road in Nasarawa State for N36.130 billion”.

Other memos were presented to council during the meeting for road rehabilitation projects and maintenance of airports across the country.

Aviation Minister Hadi Sirika said council approved N5.65 billion for the maintenance of air terminals in Abuja and Port Harcourt for three years.

FEC also approved N469.6 million for parts of L3 x-ray machine for clinics in Abuja, Kano and Lagos airports.

Sirika said the approvals centred on the maintenance of infrastructure and improved service delivery

“In this case, it’s for two terminal buildings and for the total sum of N5,653,341,739.07. This will include, of course, the VAT, which is 7.5 per cent. It’s for a period of three years.

“The maintenance will run at the two airports and it’s awarded to Messrs. CCECC, who were the company that, in the first place, built those facilities,” he said.


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