The Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso of Kano State on Sunday said the Nigeria military was competent to tackle the insurgency problem in the country.
Mr. Kwankwaso, a former Minister of Defence between 2003 and 2007, stated this during a media chat with journalists in Benin.
He said the army was as competent as he left it in 2007.
Mr. Kwankwaso, who expressed confidence in the military’s ability to deal with the challenge of insecurity in the North East, however said the Federal Government must display the political will to tackle the problem.
The governor said there was no relationship between declaration of Sharia law in part of the North and Boko Haram.
He said that Nigerians, irrespective of ethnicity, must rise to the challenge of the insecurity by fighting the menace.
He urged the Federal Government to mobilise all its resources to ensure peace reigned in the North East of the country.
The governor, however, expressed surprise at the worsening security situation.
“Though I am a bit surprise with what is happening now, I still believe that Nigeria has the military might to stop insurgency in the North East,” he said.
“Our military still remains competent and regarded as the best on the continent, going by their performances in peacekeeping missions on the continent and beyond.
“The challenge of insecurity in the country today is one that requires the support of everyone, irrespective of political party or tribe.
“Any right thinking Nigerian and friends of Nigeria must condemn what is happening in the North East today. We need a united and strong Nigeria where everyone goes about his or her legitimate business without fear.”
Kwankwaso said more than four million people have been displaced following the security challenges in the North East and blamed the situation on poverty and illiteracy in the country, especially in the North East.
He said the relative peace being enjoyed in Kano State today was largely due to the investment of his government on education and wealth creation.
The governor disclosed that as part of his investment on education, the state was presently sponsoring the university education of 3,000 students in various disciplines in 14 countries of the world.
He also said for the purpose of uniting Nigerians, his government was also working on exchange of students between different states of the country.
“This is where and how we are tackling the issue of insecurity in the state. We are investing heavily on education,” he said. “Aside primary, secondary schools education, we have also established 24 different institutes in the state, ranging from institute of film, reformation and sports among others.”
“In primary schools, we gave pupils two sets of uniforms and feed them five times in a week.
“With this, we have taken them off the streets as well as given them a sense of direction as well as occupied their minds productively,” he stated.
The governor was in Benin to felicitate with Gabriel Igbinedion on his 80th Birthday celebration.
The governor also met with 250 students being sponsored by the state in a private university in Edo.