Speaking at an interactive session with the Association of United Nation Correspondents, at the UN building in New York, President Goodluck Jonathanof Nigeria stated that the the increasing incidents of terrorism in northern Nigeria and bomb explosions around the country are not an indication that Nigeria is divided along ethno-religion sentiments, but is part of the ugly history of the world where terrorism exists in most countries and cannot be easily wiped out.
He also said that the security situation in Nigeria can be tackled internally and does not require Nigeria to ask for international assistance.
President Jonathan said, â€śWe have these challenges but it has nothing to do with elections, somebody tried to relate that to the elections whether a Christian or a Muslim is elected is not the issue. This issue of explosions have been with us and we are doing all we could to curtail it but I promise you that as a government we are committed and we will bring it downâ€ť
Alll over the world when you have issues of terrorism it cannot be easily wiped out. You might be the most powerful country but with terror attack you have to manage it and gradually suppress it and that is what we are doing. It definitely has nothing to do with the elections whether I am a Christian President or a Muslim President.
â€śI always tell people that it is part of the ugly history of the world and the issue of terrorism will definitely be over maybe in the next few years. And that is one thing Nigeria is committed to doing with other friendly countries. Initially we as a nation didnâ€™t believe we have terrorists amongst us until it became obvious that we have some elements of terrorism by the explosions in Nigeria.
â€ťIt started some years back from the Niger Delta up to the north eastern part of the country, incidentally I am from the Niger Deltaâ€ť
"The issue of insecurity has nothing to do with the issue of Christians or Muslims. If you look at the population of Nigeria, the two religion share 50-50. If you look at the result of the elections, you will see that I won almost the whole country, it was only in about four states that I had less that 25 per cent. Our constitution states that to win an election you must win 25 per cent of two-third but I got 25 per cent in about 32 states and actually, if you include Abuja it would be 34 states out of 37.
Even in the states I didnâ€™t get 25 per cent the margin was quite minimal, 16 was the minimumâ€ť.
â€śOne error most people who are not Nigerians make is that the northern part of the country is dominated by the Muslims while the southern part is dominated by Christians. That is completely wrong, you have Christians in both north and south."
â€śIn the South-Western part of the country you have an almost equal number of Christians and Muslims, even in the extreme north like in Borno State where you are experiencing most of the explosions in the country, there are significant percentage of Christians though they are more Muslims there.
â€śFor instance the Boko Haram attack, Boko Haram is a sect that is against everything Western either civilization or education, the see those who embrace them as enemies and they are more antagonistic to fellow Muslims that they perceive that have embraced the western way of life. So the explosions are not targeted at Christians because a Christian is the President."
When asked if he supports the Borno State governorâ€™s position to negotiate with the Boko Haram sect to end the attacks, President Jonathan said: â€śThere is nothing wrong if you want to negotiate with militia groups that carry weapons against the state, we did that with my predecessor, the late President Yarâ€™Adua and we succeeded in the Niger Delta. So, as the governor of the state, the state has some level of autonomy, if he has identified the people behind this and he wants to use the carrot and the stick approach there is nothing wrong with it.â€ť
"The views and opinions expressed in these comment(s) or article(s) do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of NGEX, its partners or its affiliates."
Inibehe isaac ibokette Calabar, Nigeria July 16, 2011
Boko Haram are against western education, is it not ironical that the make use of western ideas and innovations to cause mayhem. SHAME ON IDIOTS
chic Abuja, Nigeria June 22, 2011
The time of round table is over what shuld be shuld be done and mr president knows exactly what he need to do but what i also expected him to do was to issue a press statement after the police headquaters bombing but he didn't well i av lost my confidence in him he just a total failure.
Muhammad Borno, Nigeria June 16, 2011
It is obvious the he who comment above, is an illiterate of who are boko haram. And if what they are doing from in accordance with islam. No doubt, the Qur'an states that whoever kills an innocent soul without any legality, is as though he has killed the whole of humanity. And whoever saves a single soul, is as though he had saved the whole of humanity.
But our nigerian friends are afraid the know what islam is through actual source rather they rely on the media. During elections, can Buhari seek advice from goodluck? This is stupidity. Likewise if you want to know islam, read the Qur'an and authentic sayings of the holy prophet S.A.W. It is then you will decide whether or not...
egg kaduna, Great Nigeria June 15, 2011
I m so disappointed with Mr. president calling boko haram as militias, i ask Mr president what do the boko haram want (SHARIA SIMPLE) Is that militias, militia's fight for what taking from them and Mr president is saying it has nothing to do Christian.
well i don't blame him because his not from the north,or he should go and tell those corpers that died this. Mr president should be more responsible in his speech and foresight pls.