President Museveni says he would be prepared to hang than hand over the security of his country to the United Nations
Uganda’s President, Yoweri Museveni, has mocked the Nigerian military over its failure to contain the extremist sect, Boko Haram, saying he would be prepared to “hang” than surrender his country’s security to foreigners as Nigeria and other troubled African nations have done.
Mr. Museveni said the failure of the governments of Nigeria, Somalia, Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo, to protect their people and instead opt for foreign assistance amounts to a vote of no confidence.
“I have never called the United Nations to guard your security. Me, Yoweri Museveni to say that I have failed to protect my people and I call in the UN….I would rather hang myself,” Mr. Museveni was quoted by the country’s state-owned newspaper, New Vision, as saying.
He added: “We prioritized national security by developing a strong army otherwise our Uganda would be like DRC, South Sudan, Somalia or Nigeria where militias have disappeared with school children. It would be a vote of no confidence to our country and citizens if we can’t guarantee our security, what kind of persons would we be?”
Mr. Museveni made the remarks while speaking at a political event in the East African nation’s capital, Kampala, on Wednesday.
Nigeria is facing perhaps its bloodiest cycle of violence with the Boko Haram sect unleashing terror on communities, killing dozens almost daily.
The group has also killed hundreds in car bombs.
Boko Haram’s abduction of more than 250 school girls has drawn international outrage, with many lambasting the government over its handling of the crisis.
Nigeria’s largely secretive military has also come under unprecedented attacks for failing to deal with the group, and over allegations of human rights abuses. The military has also been accused of corruption and inefficiency.
The Nigerian government recently accepted international assistance to help rescue the girls abducted from Chibok, a community in Borno State.
Mr. Museveni, whose military is also faced with a brutal insurgency by the Joseph Kony-led Lord’s Resistance Army, has been fiery about the terror campaign by Boko Haram.
Early May, Mr. Museveni warned the Nigerian government against negotiating with Boko Haram.
“It would be a mistake for the government of Nigeria to negotiate with these people. The most important thing is to defeat them, then negotiations can come after that,” he said.
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