West & Central Africa

Kerry Calls for sustained efforts against Boko Haram

The United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, visiting Nigeria has said that terrorism “isn’t going to disappear soon, it takes work, it takes leadership and it requires sustain efforts from all of us.”

Kerry said the United States will continue to work with Nigeria and will support its efforts in strengthening religious tolerance and development. Kerry however warned against human rights abuses by Nigeria’s security agencies, “Extremism can’t be defeated through repression or fear. Fear instilled through repression invites not confidence but contempt.” John Kerry said.

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John Kerry and the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Saad Abubakar

John Kerry commended President Buhari on his stance on anti-corruption. Kerry said, “Nigeria is also a role model in the ongoing global efforts to fight corruption,” stressing that “corruption is not only a crime, but very dangerous and it must be tamed.”  He added, “The US. is also fully committed to fighting corruption and the entrenchment of good governance globally.”

On the Issue of Terrorism and Boko Haram, Kerry promised to look at how “we are going to look at what we can do differently,” and referred to the possibility of equipping the Nigerian Military with an attack airplane, a long standing demand by the past GoodLuck administration that the America declined to assist.

The visit by the Secretary of State demonstrates the warming relationship between Nigeria and the USA which had deteriorated during the past Presidency of Goodluck Jonathan when President Obama asked Nigeria not to pass the anti-LGBT Bill which was debated in the National Assembly and passed into law.