Nigeria’s No Show at UN Summit on Boko Haram: Who Takes The Blame?

Debo Popoola

Nigerians took to the social media to express their dissatisfaction at the unavailability of the country’s delegation at a United Nations’ summit held in support of the countries affected by the Boko Haram’s insurgency.

For years, Boko Haram terrorist group have proven to be a hard nut for the Nigerian army to crack; and the more the army try to subdue them, the more they unleash their mayhem on innocent citizens. The terrorist group have killed thousands of people and rendered millions homeless in the spate of five years. Many Nigerians have now become refugees in their own land as IDP camps are springing up daily.

One wonders why if a summit is organized to discuss how succor can be brought to those affected by these terrorists, why would Nigeria – apparently the most affected of all the countries in West Africa – not have a single representation at the summit. It is on this backdrop that Nigerians, both young and old, have since been expressing their disappointed, especially the ones active on the social media platforms- twitter, facebook, etc.

The Excuse: Not an Important Submit.

The presidency has since come out in defense of itself. The excuse given according to the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Shehu Lawal, was that the summit was not an important one, that at the time the summit was holding, the president was also holding meetings with head of states of some big countries. What an excuse!

I believe what most Nigerians are asking for was not Buhari’s presence at the meeting. What was needed was a representation. It could have been any of the delegates. The Prime Minister of Niger was physically present at the summit, this shows how important the summit was.

Another excuse given by the presidency was that no official invitation was issued to them by the organizers of the meeting. But it was later discovered that there was actually an invitation issued, but someone refused to do his or her job properly and the invitation did not get to the right person.

The Little Thing That Counts

But of all these, who is to be blamed? The presidency I think. Nigeria could have benefited immensely from the summit if she was duly represented as other affected countries were present, and their discussions centered on how the affected communities get help from other nations. I believe this act has put a dent on this administration’s promise that it would do anything possible to help those affected by the insurgency.


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