UPDATE: Buhari launches national security roadmap

• FG won’t succumb to blackmail over Almajiri proscription ― NSA

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday launched the new national security strategy document for 2019.

The ceremony took place inside the Aso Chamber of the presidential villa, Abuja shortly before the commencement of the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting.

Sparking at the event, Buhari said he remained fully and unreservedly committed to achieving a safer and a more secure Nigeria.

Buhari launches national security roadmap
Buhari launches national security roadmap

He said the execution of the strategy as encapsulated by the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) was a task for all heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government.

The President said: ‘‘Security is a bottom-to-top cooperation. Failure at any level leads to a serious lapse in overall security.

‘‘I, therefore, call on all of you gathered here as Heads of Ministries, Departments and Agencies to see yourselves as stakeholders and partners in the onerous task of securing our people and to demonstrate the unity of purpose in implementing this strategy.”

President Buhari noted that the various security challenges confronting the country had made it necessary for the articulation of a comprehensive and coordinated response that involves all segments of society and all elements of national power.

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He added: ‘‘I am very pleased that the National Security Strategy of 2019 is a product of painstaking and laborious deliberations by relevant stakeholders committed to the task of safeguarding our nation from both internal and external threats.

‘‘It represents a thoughtful, strategic and practical expression of our resolve to make Nigeria safe for development, investment, growth and prosperity for everybody.

‘‘As we continue to work towards completely ending the insurgency in the North East and lay the foundation for sustainable peace, and development in the region, we are also addressing conflicts, between farmers and herders, banditry and various forms of security challenges.

‘‘In addition to security, economic diversification and fighting corruption, our administration’s priorities for the second term include massive improvements in education, healthcare and agriculture.

‘‘These priorities reflect our commitment to enhance the social security of Nigerians as a means of improving their physical security.”

President Buhari also expressed delight that the 59-page document reflected the nexus between physical and social security its emphasis on overall human security.

President Buhari commended the NSA, Babagana Monguno and his team for delivering the document, saying that he was pleased also to note that the strategy emerged from a broad-ranging participatory process that elicited contributions primarily from security, intelligence, law enforcement agencies and the Armed Forces.

He also acknowledged the contributions of other stakeholders such as MDAs and the civil society, adding that ‘‘this strategy will inform government-wide and society-wide measures designed to promote public safety and national security.’’

In his overview of the eight-chapter document, Monguno assured that the Buhari administration would not succumb to blackmail over its intention to proscribe the Almajiri system of education.

He said: “Now, what the strategy does is to look at our national security objectives and align these objectives with this administration’s goals in fighting corruption, giving access to improved education, taking care of the healthcare problems as well as increased productivity in the agriculture sector. “But rooted in the strategy are issues that may not be visible to the necked eyes, but issues that have tended to be malignant to cause a lot of greater problems to this society.

“Fundamentally, if we are going to take care of these problems, we need to try and safeguard the fast-growing young population of Nigeria and guess what? We need to look at issues of poverty eradication and illiteracy.

“The issue of illiteracy is directly linked to the issue of children not going to school, this Almajirai phenomenon which we have been talking about, we cannot continue to push it under the carpet because of what?

“Eventually, it will come back to bite us in the butt big time. We need to deal with this issue and it is the responsibility of all of us to try and take care of this issue without any inhibition.

“I will tell you one thing. The administration of President Muhammadu Buhari in its pursuit for greater and enhanced security will not allow itself to be blackmailed or handcuffed by the disarming philosophy of compliance with certain aspects that are socio-cultural in nature which people tend to be adverse to dealing. We must grab the bull by the horn and deal with these issues.”

He pointed out that the strategy outlined the major security concerns of the nation for which policies and strategies have been articulated and how the government plans to deal with them.

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