Arms Procurement Process is Being Sanitised
Following the revelations in recent weeks on the diversion of funds meant for the procurement of arms and equipment for the military, President Muhammadu Buhari monday in Abuja said that his administration was taking urgent and appropriate action to restore order, due process and probity to the procurement process of the Nigerian Armed Forces.
A statement issued by his media aide, Mr. Femi Adesina, said Buhari spoke at a meeting with the British Secretary of State for Defence, Mr. Michael Fallon.
He said Buhari expressed disappointment that the procurement of equipment for the Armed Forces, which followed due process in the past, was subjected to corruption and shady deals under the last administration.
“They just put foreign exchange in a briefcase and travelled to procure equipment for the military. That is why we have found ourselves in the crisis we are now facing,” the president said.
Welcoming the offer by the British Government to assist Nigeria in defence procurement, intelligence gathering and training, Buhari restated his call on the international community to collaborate more and work with greater unity of purpose to overcome global terrorism.
“Terrorism has become very sophisticated now. If developed nations can be attacked and hundreds of lives lost, how much more developing countries.
“In the West African sub-region, Nigeria is the main battleground of the Boko Haram insurgency. We have made a lot of progress against the terrorists, but we will welcome more assistance from our friends and the international community,” the president told Fallon.
Fallon said he was in the country to see what more Britain could do to support Nigeria in battling terrorism and violent extremism.
“Groups like Boko Haram don’t believe in democracy and freedom of choice, so it’s a common fight for us all,” he told Buhari.
Answering questions from journalists after the meeting, Fallon said: “We discussed what we could do to help Nigeria deal with this country’s insurgency. Britain and Nigeria are democracies; they are free people. Boko Haram and its way of life needs to be defeated.