No time to waste: Buhari drops urgent message for West African neighbours


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Buhari drops urgent message for West African neighbours

By Kazeem Ugbodaga

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday said countries in West Africa plagued by insurgency must urgently team up to liberate the region from Boko Haram and ISWAP terrorists.

The President spoke at State House, Abuja, while receiving the new Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for West Africa and the Sahel (UNOWAS), Mr Mahamat Saleh Annadif, a Chadian.

Buhari said: “You are our neighbour. You have vast experience on matters affecting the Sahel, having served for five years in Mali. I hope you will get the countries to work together to confront the issues affecting them.”

Describing the problems as “enormous,” President Buhari noted that Boko Haram has exacted heavy toll in terms of lives and resources in Nigeria and some neighbouring countries, while Mali equally has a large swathe of the country occupied by militants.

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He submitted: ‘I hope under the auspices of UNOWAS, you will help get the problems sorted out. Most of them have to do with the instability in Libya, and it affects all of us.”

Buhari pledged the assistance of Nigeria to the Special Representative, so that he could succeed in his assignment.

Annadif said he was visiting shortly after his appointment, because he recognized the crucial role of Nigeria in West Africa.

He said he was quite familiar with the problems of the Sahel region, and would depend on the help of Nigeria to succeed.

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