Molly Kilete, Abuja
The Federal Government, on Tuesday, said it would do everything possible to ensure that the Islamic States In Syria (ISIS) members do not convert any part of the Nigerian nation as training ground to breed terrorists.
This was even as government said it is aware of the report that the ISIS were sneaking in jihadists from Syria into Nigeria to train as terrorists for possible attacks in Britain.
It, however, assured that it was doing everything possible to curb what its described as the “illegal movement”, by the terrorists group to use Nigeria as their training base.
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Mrs. Nuratu Batagarawa, gave the assurance at a media briefing held to announce the 7th meeting of ministers of Defence of the Sahel Saharan States (CEN-SAD), in Abuja.
Batagarawa, who said the movement of ISIS into Nigeria would dominate the upcoming meeting, said the government has taken a holistic decision to deal divisively with the issue and prevent the illegal movement from gaining access into the country.
According to her, “We all heard about the recruitment of ISIS and all of that. “Yes it is on the table and will be the top agenda and the center of the meeting and It will be discussed appropriately with a view to finding a holistic solution to curbing these movement because obviously such movements are probably illegal, mostly illegal and
government has taken cognizance of this.
“The organization itself is aware of this and is already taking a concerted effort with a view towards finding a lasting solution to containing this illegal movement and illegal associations”.
The permanent secretary who listed CEN-SAD, objective to include promoting cooperation amongst member states in the area of Defence and security, establishment of a sub-regional economic union, facilitate the development of transportation among otters, said members States have benefited immensely since it’s establishment.
She said the conference which has “consolidating the achievements of fight against terrorism through solidarity development actions”, as its theme, would be attended by ministers of Defence, adding that the conference would focus purely on Defence and security issues.
While noting the gains accrued from Nigeria’s campaign against terror and insurgency which she said is being consolidated in so many fronts, Batagarawa, called on member country to emulate the Operation Safe Corridor Programme of Nigeria which she said is aimed at address the suffering of the people of the birth east fast tracking the peace process.
She said “it is supposed to de-radicalize, rehabilitate and reintegrate surrendered insurgents”
“There is also the counter terrorism center at the office of the national security adviser to tackle the root causes of radicalization and proffer appropriate solutions. The center also helps in countering radical ideologies of fundamentalist groups in Nigeria”.
She said the meeting schedule to hold between 20-22, June, would no doubt offer member states share experiences and re-invigorate the “concerted efforts at making the Sahel-Saharan sun-region safer and more peaceful for our people”.