A former Chief of Army Staff, General Abdurrahman Dambazau (retd.), says insurgency has gone beyond being a threat to Nigeria as it now affects about 15 countries in West Africa including Benin Republic.
“This (insecurity) has become a regional issue because it is an issue that has engulfed the whole of the Lake Chad Basin region and it is an issue that also has connection with the Sahel region as a whole.
“It is a regional issue and even Benin (Republic), our neighbour is getting a touch of it,” Dambazau said on Channels Television’s current affairs programme, NewsNight.
Dambazau, who was COAS from August 2008 to September 2010 and Nigeria’s Minister of Interior between November 2015 and May 2019, said at first, the countries in the Lake Chad Basin such as Chad and Niger Republic thought terrorism was Nigeria’s challenge until recently.
“Initially, some of those countries in the Lake Chad Basin did not show much concern about it, that it was Nigeria’s problem until it became very much a reality that it was a regional problem.”
He, however, said the countries have now joined the fight against terrorism through the Multinational Joint Task Force established by the Nigerian Government to checkmate trans-border security challenges.
“Even Benin Republic which is not a member of the Lake Chad Basin Commission is contributing towards that because it is also a threat to it. It is a threat to the whole of West Africa,” the ex-Army chief said.