Buhari to U.S. Secretary of State: Why we’re careful on rescue of Chibok, Dapchi schoolgirls

U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson and Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari

Nigeria prefers to have schoolgirls abducted by Boko Haram from Chibok and Dapchi back alive, and that is why it has chosen negotiation, rather than military action, says President Muhammadu Buhari.

Receiving the American Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, at State House, Abuja, Monday, Mr. Buhari added that Nigeria was working with international organisations and negotiators, to ensure that the girls were released unharmed by their captors.

“We are trying to be careful. It is better to get our daughters back alive,” the president said, according to a statement released by his office.

He thanked the United States for assistance rendered in the fight against insurgency, noting that Nigerian forces are good, “but need assistance in the areas of training and equipment.”

Mr. Buhari promised that his administration would continue to do its best to secure the country, adding that he would be in Yobe State, from where Dapchi schoolgirls were abducted, later this week “as part of my condolence and sympathy visits to areas where we have had unfortunate events.”

He pledged free and fair polls in 2019, recalling that former American Secretary of State, John Kerry, had visited before the 2015 polls, “and he told the party in government then, and those of us in opposition, to behave ourselves, and we did.”

The visiting Secretary of State commended President Buhari on his effort in the anti-corruption war, the statement by Femi Adesina said.

Mr. Tillerson said Nigeria was a very important country to the U.S, stressing: “You have our support in your challenges. We will also support opportunities to expand the economy, commercial investments, and peaceful polls in 2019.”

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