Nigeria’s former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, has said the Boko Haram sect can overrun Nigeria, unless Federal Government wakes up to its responsibility of protecting the citizens.
Atiku who made the statements at a world press conference in Abuja’s Nicon Hilton Monday over the troubling security situation in Nigeria said it was pathetic that the Nigerian military which fought a civil war and achieved a total reconciliation and reconstruction within 30 months, was today unable to deal with a five-year-old insurgency.
He said, “Ever since these terrorists have been taking over territories, there was never a time the Nigerian military has recovered one inch of any lost territory in these five years.
“Can you imagine a whole country like Nigeria with its armed forces? Not one inch of territory recovered from the terrorists? How can you now convince me that this government has the capacity to recover an inch if in the last five years they have not recovered one inch? Government must rise up to its responsibility of protecting its citizens otherwise the whole of this country can be overrun.”
The APC Presidential aspirant accused the Federal Government of failing to rise to the occasion.
“For me, I don’t believe really that the government has exerted itself in trying to contain this situation because even if it means the government should move in 10,000 troops to a location to deal decisively with this situation, it should not be shy to do so,” he added.
While berating the Jonathan administration, he said, “This is a government which has allowed a small bunch of small terrorists group for close to five years in this country to operate freely.
“We fought a full blown civil war in 30 months in Nigeria and we achieved total reconciliation and reconstruction in 30 months.
“I also recall when we were in office, such an insurgency arose in Yobe State and the former governor of Yobe State is here, when he was in office, it took us just a few weeks to flush out those insurgents, we dealt with them.”
No fewer than 300 Nigerian soldiers fled to Cameroon when Boko Haram insurgents overran Mubi, the second largest city in Borno State from security forces on Wednesday.
Cameroonian military sources tell newsmen that Nigerian soldiers fled the north-eastern part of Nigeria, where the insurgency launched by the sect was raging, and crossed the Nigeria-Cameroon border.
The sources also said more Nigerian troops might have fled to other border towns in Cameroon after the Mubi attack. However, he added that their number had yet to be ascertained.
The insurgents had taken over Mararaba Hildi, some few kilometres to Mubi town, on Tuesday, prompting a mass exodus of residents.
Hundreds of soldiers were said to have fled Mubi, which hosts two universities, as insurgents made advances to take over the town on Wednesday. Atiku Abubakar is an indigene of Adamawa state, north-east Nigeria.