President Bola Tinubu has tasked the United Nations (UN) to be more practical in supporting Nigeria in the fight against terrorism, in view of the rippling effect on global peace, displacements of people, and rising poverty.
In an audience with the Under-Secretary General of the United Nations Office on Counter-Terrorism, Vladimir Voronkov, at the State House on Thursday, the President in a statement by Presidential spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale noted that terrorism had consistently reversed the gains on development and increased instability in families and communities, but that UN cooperation in dealing with it had always been inconsistent and whimsical in the developing world context.
“We appreciate all that you have been doing. We know that in the face of many demands and challenges, you can still do much better. We can score you ‘A’ in collaboration but ‘B’ in physical support. You have to do more because terrorism is an effective danger to democracy; terrorism is also an effective danger to development.
“Growth and prosperity can not be achieved until we banish terrorism. We have to equally look at other sides of the issue, and I have said it is the where, how, and when of terrorism”, the President said.
President Tinubu noted that in going forward, global peace and prosperity will demand the swift and comprehensive provision of the right answers to the challenge posed by insurgencies in parts of the world, which threaten universal stability.
“We must take into account the basic needs of our people. If out of the meagre resources presently available, we have to dip our hands without the steady support from organisations like the UN, then we are in trouble,” the President asserted.
In his remarks, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amb. Yusuf Maitama Tuggar said he had highlighted some of the conditions that promote insurgency like poverty and injustice with the UN team while noting the Nigerian Government’s response.
“Nigeria continues to make significant investments in education and social security,” he said.
While commending Nigeria’s contributions toward global counter-terrorism efforts, the Under-Secretary General noted that Nigeria already had a framework on prevention, mitigation, and reconciliation, commending the efforts taken so far in tackling terrorism.
“Of course, terrorism is part of the international agenda, and we had a successful meeting with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, discussing how to enrich our agenda on international terrorism response. I can only mention that politically, and from the point of view of capacity building on activities for counter terrorism, Nigeria is one of the leading partners,” he added.
Voronkov told the President that the UN was planning a Counter-Terrorism Summit in Abuja slated for April 2024, and it would be largely driven by African nations with an African agenda.