President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed optimism that Nigeria has the capacity to defeat the Boko Haram insurgents.
This is coming amidst increased attacks by the terrorists in different parts of northern Nigeria.
Making reference to the civil war that lasted 30 months, Buhari said it may take long but Nigeria will move ahead of the insurgency.
He stated this while receiving Janez Lenarcic, the European Union (EU) commissioner for crisis management at the state house on Friday.
In a statement by presidential spokesperson, Femi Adesina, Buhari said:
“If we were capable to fight a 30-month civil war and reorganised our country, I wonder why people are thinking that Nigeria cannot do it.”
“I assure you of Nigeria’s commitment to enhance and deepen cooperation with the EU in all areas. Our priorities in the next level is to ensure that internally displaced persons, IDPs, are rehabilitated so that livelihood should be established and the children should not lose the opportunity to go back to school, which is very important for the future of that area and Nigeria generally.
“We have the experience of the civil war. I could recall the role of the military, the army, each commander had in his pocket how to behave himself and how to allow international bodies like yourself to go round and see for themselves that people are treated in the most humane way. We have this experience and I assure you that we also have this confidence in your organisation. That is why I feel that Nigeria is capable of handling this crisis, it may take long but we are capable of handling it.
“The important thing really is weapons reaching the Sahel; the instability it is causing. Look at the casualties in Mauritania, Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali; Libya has a direct impact on the stability of the Sahel. As for Boko Haram, we try to disabuse the mind of the people and I think our people now understand the basic dishonesty in it. With my experience personally in the civil war, I am sure we will get over it.”