The presidency has blamed the Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Sokoto, Mathew Kukah and other opponents of the Buhari’s government for the delay in delivery of the 12 Super Tucano fighter jets promised by the United States government.
In a statement by the Senior Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media, Garba Shehu, the presidency said; “It is a pity that US policy and support towards our country, including during the Buhari administration, has been so inconsistent.
“In 2015 the then newly-elected Buhari government requested US military support in the form of Super Tucano jet fighters for the Nigerian Air Force. The Nigerian military, security, and intelligence services repeatedly made this request. The US administration of the time concurred: the delivery of such jets would help deliver a critical turning point in Nigeria’s struggle against jihadist terrorists across the Sahel.
“Yet two years later, that jet delivery was rescinded, the reasons given that unless Nigeria improved its religious relations between Christianity and Islam then US support would not be forthcoming in this, and many other areas.
“Such views were compounded by the constant lobbying of US Congress by the opponents of the Nigerian government who had lost the previous election, and many of their southern religious supporters—including Bishop Mathew Kukah, the Catholic Bishop of Diocese of Sokoto, who, unsurprising, provides a supportive quote for the dustcover of the new edition of Campbell’s book. (Kukah even took to addressing the US Congress himself, briefing his audience on the history of coups in Nigeria—without, of course, mentioning that none had occurred since 1993, some 29 years ago).
“Fortunately, now today under a new US administration these jets have been delivered, and with it, a serious blow against the terrorists—with the supreme leader of Islamic State in West Africa and scores of other leaders of the group eliminated in airstrikes.
“It is also inconsistent to preach the need for stability but needlessly delay sharing military equipment in the form of jets – not least when it is now proven they would have helped Nigeria much earlier defeat the terrorists who threaten our country.”
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