20/01/2020 – The European Parliament which is the legislative branch of the European Union (EU), recently suggested that the Nigerian Army and the government had not been telling citizens the whole truth about the fight against terrorism in Nigeria.
This followed the EU parliament’s claim that progress in the fight against terrorism in Nigeria has been stalled.
The army has often made Nigerians believe that Boko Haram and Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) were on the verge of being entirely wiped out in the country.
On several occasions, the army had told Nigerians that it was flushing out of the North-East, remnants of the insurgents.
The Nigerian government has maintained a similar stand on the fight against insurgency.
Both the army and the Nigerian government once declared that the terrorist groups had been “technically” defeated.
However, in its resolution of January 16, 2020, the EU parliament said contrary to what Nigerians were being led to believe, there had not been any progress in the war being staged against terrorism in Nigeria.
The EU parliament, condemning the recent attacks in Nigeria, including the slaughtering of 11 Christian captives in the North-East last Christmas, regretted that terror and other attacks in the country had worsened.
It reiterated its worries over the prolonged crisis in Nigeria and the precarious security condition in the North-East.
It also strongly condemned the frequent “violations of human rights, international and humanitarian law, whether based on religion or ethnicity.”
EU parliament “Condemns, in particular, the recent increase in violence against ethnic and religious communities, including the targeting of religious institutions and worshippers.”
It “deplores that progress has stalled in the fight against Boko Haram, ISWAP and the increased occurrence and severity of suicide attacks and direct attacks against military positions.”
The parliament “Urges the Nigerian authorities to guarantee respect for human rights in the country, and to protect the civilian population from terrorism and violence; insists that such efforts must be conducted in full accordance with respect for human rights and the rule of law, in line with the country’s international obligations.
“Considers any form of the extermination of human beings or ethnic cleansing barbaric and a crime against humanity; urges the Nigerian Government to address the root causes of violence by ensuring equal rights for all citizens and non-discrimination legislation; insists, in this regard, on the need to further promote inter-religious dialogue and the peaceful coexistence of citizens irrespective of their religion, engaging with all relevant stakeholders, including the Nigerian Inter-religious council.”
One of the promises President Muhammadu Buhari made to Nigerians when he came into power in 2015 was that he was going to defeat Boko Haram.
However, the terrorists have continued to exist more than four years after Buhari made the promise.