Buhari blames COVID-19 restrictions over worsening insecurity

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President Muhammadu Buhari says restrictions put in place to checkmate the spread of Coronavirus disease in the country is responsible for the rising cases of insecurity.

Mr Buhari stated this on Friday while addressing Nigerians as the nation celebrates democracy day today.

There have been rising cases of banditry and terrorism in the country with the recent occurring in Borno State where Boko Haram terrorists killed 81 persons while destroying properties worth millions of Naira.

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In Katsina, amidst increased cases of banditry, the state government pulled out of the peace deal it entered with bandits operating in the state for allegedly failing on their part to keep to the terms of agreement.

“I regret recent sporadic incidents with tragic loss of lives in Katsina and Borno States as a result of criminals taking advantage of COVID-19 restrictions. Security Agencies will pursue the perpetrators and bring them to swift justice,” Mr Buhari said.

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While maintaining that his administration has restored peace in the Niger Delta region, the president said there is no Nigerian territory under the control of Boko Haram terrorists, contrary to the position of a federal lawmaker from one of the affected states.

“In the area of security, we remain unshaken in our resolve to protect our national infrastructure including on-shore and off-shore oil installations, secure our territorial waters and end piracy in the Gulf of Guinea.

“Ending insurgency, banditry and other forms of criminality across the nation is being accorded appropriate priorities and the men and women of the Armed Forces of Nigeria have considerably downgraded such threats across all geo-political zones.

“All the Local Governments that were taken over by the Boko Haram insurgents in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa have long been recovered and are now occupied by indigenes of these areas who were hitherto forced to seek a living in areas far from their ancestral homes,” he added.

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Mr Buhari who sent his heartfelt condolences to all the relatives and communities affected, implored state and local governments to revamp their intelligence assets so that the security agencies can nip in the bud any planned attacks in remote rural areas.

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