The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed says he stands by what he said in 2015, that the Boko Haram terrorists have been technically defeated in Nigeria.
Lai Mohammed stated this when he paid a working visit to the new corporate headquarters of “The Sun” Newspaper in Lagos on Monday, October 21, 2019.
According to him, his 2015 comment that Boko Haram had been technically defeated was based on what he saw on the ground when he led a team of local and international journalists to the epicentre of insurgency.
The minister, who was fielding questions from the editorial board of the newspaper led by the Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief, Mr Onuoha Ukeh, said Nigeria is currently facing global terrorism where you have ISIS, ISWAP and Al-Qaeda all working together.
“I stand by what I said that Boko Haram is technically defeated. What we are having today is global terrorism where you have the ISIS, ISWAP Al-qaeda all working together,” Mohammed said.
“Terrorism is a global issue. Between 2009 and 2015 we were fighting Boko Haram, but today we are fighting global terrorism where the remnants of the Army in Syria are now joining hands with the ISWAP and others.
“I was on ground in Bama, Konduga and Maiduguri and I know what I saw before I made that claim. We are fighting global terrorism and that is why we are appealing to our foreign partners, especially the UN and our neighbours.
“By the time we get more platforms and the new helicopters that are being expected there will be tremendous improvement.”
The minister also enjoined “the Sun” to continue to support the government in fighting fake news and hate speech.
“Fake news and hate speech pose imminent threat to the survival of the nation’s existence. The purveyors of siamese twins of evil must be checkmated and government will continue to engage to end the menace,” he said.
“We expect you to remain in the vanguard of the efforts to tackle fake news and hate speech. We expect you to educate our people on the efforts being made, especially by the government, in this regard.”