Talking to the Boko Haram sect is still the best option for securing peace in the nation, newly appointed National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki has said.
Dasuki said this on Friday during a visit with Borno State Gorvernor Kashim Shettima at the Government house in Maiduguri, heartland of the radical Islamist sect.
The NSA attributed the security challenges in the country to hardships suffered by the people long before the insurgency began in 2009 and said a solution must be found to check the growing trend of violence.
Dasuki urged the Borno state government and other stakeholders to consider ideas on how best to solve the lingering crisis of insecurity in the nation’s north, saying that northern governors were better suited to identifying the problem.
The new NSA, who also visited the restive Yobe state capital city, Damaturu, raised concerns about the effect of Boko Haram violence on the state’s economy and psychology.
Like Borno, Kaduna and Kano states, Yobe State has witnessed an increasingly violent insurgency, with hundreds killed in bomb and gun attacks this year alone. Dasuki urged the sect to “embrace dialogue, as the Federal Government was not only sincere but committed to amicable solution of the problems”, the Vanguard reported.
Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan, in a televised question and answer segment with the media last Sunday, expressed willingness to bring Boko Haram members back into society’s folds but added that the Federal Government “will not dialogue with a faceless sect”.
Shettima thanked the week-old NSA for his visit and reiterated his administration’s commitment to providing employment, especially through agriculture, for his people. He further called on members of the sect, who he described as “our brothers and sisters” to lay down their weapons.