Nigerian president pays tribute to troops in visit to frontline

2021-06-17 15:55:43 GMT2021-06-17 23:55:43(Beijing Time) Xinhua English

ABUJA, June 17 (Xinhua) -- Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday visited troops fighting Boko Haram in the frontline and paid tributes to them for their efforts in tackling security challenges in the country's northeast region.

"We owe you a debt of gratitude. Give no breathing space to terrorists and criminals," Buhari said while addressing troops at the Maimalari Cantonment in Maiduguri, capital of the northern state of Borno.

"I am delighted to be with you this afternoon, to address you on this special occasion of my official visit to Borno State. I want to seize this opportunity to put it on record that our nation will forever be indebted to you, for your patriotic commitment to the defense of our fatherland against insurgency and criminality," the president said.

The Nigerian leader's official visit to Borno was to assess the security situation in the northeast region and also inaugurate some completed government projects, including 4,000 housing units for the people displaced by the 12-year-old Boko Haram militancy.

He charged the armed forces and other security agencies not to give breathing space to the terrorists and criminals in various parts of the country, saying the war must be concluded with the restoration of peace and reconstruction of all the affected areas.

"We should not allow our adversaries the opportunity or breathing space to challenge or undermine our national interests and core values," he said. "The defense and security agencies should rest assured of the Federal Government's unalloyed commitment to winning the battle against terror and criminality."

According to him, several interventions by the government had led to the procurement and delivery of large consignments of critical combat enablers, including high-caliber weapons and ammunition to end the menace of Boko Haram.

"Many have been injected into the theater, and soon other equipment that have just arrived in the country would also be deployed to the theater of operations. Much more equipment will be procured for the Armed Forces to cater to both the short and long-term requirements," Buhari added.

The president also sent condolences to the families of the fallen soldiers, assuring that his administration will spare no effort or resources to ensure that their widows and children are well cared for.

Boko Haram has been trying to establish an Islamist state in northeastern Nigeria since 2009. The terror group has also extended its attacks to other countries in the Lake Chad Basin. Enditem