The Federal Government (FG) on Monday said that the worst is over as regards the state of insecurity in the country.
It said while the country may still witness isolated attacks on soft targets by terrorists, the security agencies have battled the agents of darkness and recorded massive victory against the terrorists.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, stated this on Monday in Abuja during a joint press conference on the nation’s security situation.
Others who jointly addressed the presence conference include the Ministers of Defence Maj.-Gen. Bashir Magashi, rtd, Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, as well as Police Affairs, Alhaji Mohammed Dingyadi.
Mohammed said the security forces are winning the fight against insecurity and terrorism, adding that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari’s (retd.) regime would stop at nothing in securing lives and property of Nigerians.
According to him, never again will terrorists and bandits and their cohorts hold sway in our country.
He said, “As you are all aware, the issue of security has dominated ournational discourse in recent times, against the background of the terrorism, banditry and kidnapping in the North-East, North-West and North Central; separatist violence and crude oil theft in the South-East and South-South as well as cultism, armed robberry and sundry crimes in the South-West.
“Today, we are here to tell you that while we may not be there yet, our military and other security agencies have succeeded – and are succeeding – in substantially restoring security across the nation. As far as the daunting security challenges we face are concerned, we can tell you that the worst is over. Never again will terrorists and bandits and their cohorts hold sway in our country.
“The security challenges we have face, as an administration, have been daunting – from terrorism to banditry to kidnapping to separatist violence to crude oil theft to armed robbery and sundry crimes. It’s undoubtedly the greatest challenge to the peace and security of our great nation since the civil war from 1967 to 1970.
“It is the kind of challenge that would have overwhelmed many nations. But thanks to the purposeful leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari, we can say, I want to repeat, that the worst is over and peace and security are gradually returning to the land. Please don’t misunderstand or misrepresent this assertion. We may still witness isolated cases of security challenges here and there, but it will not be on the scale that we have witnessed in the past.”
According to him, when many called for the use of foreign mercenaries to tackle the challenges, especially terrorism and banditry, President Buhari never wavered in his belief in the ability of our gallant men and women in uniform to rise to the occasion, and rise to the occasion they did.
“Some said the security challenges have overwhelmed the military, but the military has now demonstrated that no group of ragtag criminals can ever overwhelm them. Terrorists and bandits and co can run but cannot hide, and this has been demonstrated by the arrest of those who attacked a church in Owo.
“These criminals can run but cannot hide, as we have seen in the decimation of the cowards who ambushed the Brigade of Guards troops in Abuja. I am sure you will hear from my colleagues how our military and other security agencies have been decimating the top echelon of ISWAP and Boko Haram, how armed bandits camps and resources have been destroyed, and how the capacity of IPOB/ESN has been substantially degraded.
“We are therefore not saying the battle is over. No. What we are saying is that our military and other security agents have been able to contain the daunting security challenges we face, and that the worst is indeed over. We have now put the terrorists, bandits and their ilk on the run and we will not relent until they have been crushed.”