By Johnbosco Agbakwuru – Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the Armed Forces and other security agencies in Nigeria to ensure that nothing stops the November 6 governorship election in Anambra State.
This is as the National Security Adviser, General Babagana Monguno (retd), has said that the new leader of the Islamic State of West African Province, ISWAP, Mallam Bako was two days ago killed by the military.
Recall that the Chief of Defense Staff, CDS, Lucky Irabor had told State House correspondents last week Thursday that the ISWAP leader, Abu Musab Al-barnawi was eliminated by the military.
Briefing journalists after the meeting of security chiefs presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the NSA, said President Buhari gave the armed forces the marching order in response to the heightened security challenges in Anambra state.
Monguno said, “The President has directed that under no circumstances will anything be allowed to stop the elections from taking place successfully. The people have a right to vote and select their leader.
“No group or individual will be allowed to stimulate anarchy and chaos, leading to murderous activities.
“The President has made it very clear that the Armed Forces and all law enforcement agencies must make sure that the elections take place even if it means overwhelming the entire environment with the presence of security agencies.
“There are so many implications for elections to be sabotaged by non-state actors; in the first place, we are in a democracy, secondly it is important to note that if these non-state actors should succeed in destroying the potentials for orderly elections, then it is natural that other parts of the country would also want to copy this same situation.”
He further said that in the last two months, the military has recorded a lot of successes in the fight against insurgency in the North-East zone of the country which put pressure on the ISWAP and the Boko Haram Islamic terrorists.
“The fact again is that the armed forces, the land forces have done an excellent job because in the span of one month we have been able to take out the leadership of the Islamic State of West African Province (ISWAP) – that is Abu Musab Al-barnawi.
“Two days ago, the man who succeeded him, one Malam Bako, one of the prominent leaders of the Shura Council of the Islamic State of West African Province, was also taken out.
“They are also contending with leadership crisis. You know these things are also accompanied with inherent issues of trust, conflicts, mutual suspicion and other things.
“So, the operations being conducted by the armed forces in the Northern parts of the country put a lot of pressure on the Islamic State of West African Province, Boko Haram and also the tangential group known as Islamic State in the Greatest Sahara.”
The Minister of Police Affairs, Maigari Dingyadi, who also attended the meeting, reiterated that the Police are ready to ensure there is peace in Anambra and all other parts of the country.
He said, “In particular, we talked about the Anambra governorship election coming on 6th of November and we want to assure the people of Anambra State and all Nigerians that the government is committed to conducting that election.
“The election has to be free and fair, we are going to put every machinery in place to ensure that people are well secured. That is the only way to ensure that we promote democracy and good governance in this country.”
Among those at the meeting were Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (SAN); Attorney-General of the Federation, AGF, and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami; Minister of Defense, Major General Bashir Magashi (retd); Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama; the Chief of Staff to the President, Professor Ibrahim Gambari; and the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (retd).
Others are the Chief of Defense Staff, General Lucky Irabor; Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Farouk Yahaya; Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo; Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Isiaka Oladayo Amao; Director-General of the Department of State Service (DSS), Yusuf Bichi; and the Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), Ahmed Rufai Abubakar.