The recent weeks have seen Nigerians plied with reports of Boko Haram attacks, which have turned out to be real, blown out of proportion or simply imagined.
The distortion of the accounts about this real, perceived and imagined attacks have contributed in no small measure to achieving what the terrorists could not attain with their inhuman acts, which is to sow terror in the hearts of Nigerians.
The Save Humanity Advocacy Centre (SHAC), has fingered France of fueling activities of terrorists in Nigeria in the recent times.
The group said a France-based media outfit had in the recent times through news wires, networks and publications that are directly or indirectly connected with foreign interests that actively pursue destabilization agenda in Nigeria.
SHAC said in the course of its many field work, it had discovered that these manipulated reports about Boko Haram’s exploit against government troops were as distressing as actual attacks on the people.
Executive Secretary of the group, Ibrahim Abubakar, said since the prospect of oil exploration in the region improved, the hand of France has become a recurrent decimal in the terrorist equation unfolding in the region.
Countless times, French trainers have either been caught in the crossfire with the terrorists or even arrested in a couple of instances. The country has never been able to offer satisfactory explanation for its questionable role in this regard.
According to the group, News services of French origin, like AFP, have been strategic to Boko Haram being able to release its videos without the possibility of being traced.
“The impression we have is that there is a sort of partnership between AFP and Boko Haram that allows it to run propaganda for the terrorists.
The news wire has equally perfected its reports to present the terrorists as legitimate fighters. The travesty of this situation is that AFP will never report criminals in such light when it affects France or its other allies – it would in such cases slant its reports to criminalize any act of terror committed against France,” Abubakar said.
Speaking further, the group ES said contrary to the policy of other countries, France is actively involved in paying ransom to terrorists when its nationals are abducted.
His words, “It may appear as the humane thing to do but revelations that the kidnappings that occasion these ransom payments were in fact staged as a front for France to finance Boko Haram.
We should be concerned that French nationals curiously have the knack for straying into the areas where Boko Haram operate, certainly kidnapped and definitely released in exchange for ransom.
“In spite of his ritualistic expression of support for the anti-terrorism efforts, Boko Haram attacks actually spiked in the period preceding and following the visit of Emmanuel Macron, President of France, to Nigeria.
The chatter in the intelligence community is that Nigeria’s francophone neighbors boosted their support for the terrorist group to impress Macron that they are doing a good job of promoting French interest.
“The tacit support of certain countries for the Islamic State terrorists continues to translate into strengthening Boko Haram.
The weapons they hand over to those they want to overthrow Syria’s Bashar al-Assad are pouring through Nigeria’s francophone neighbors and ending up in the hands of Boko Haram.
Even when this realization is so profound these countries have refused to do the humane thing by cutting off this indirect support for Boko Haram.
“The Save Humanity Advocacy Centre is therefore calling for an end to the grandstanding over the problem of terrorism in Nigeria.
We demand that Nigerian authorities break from the adherence to diplomatic protocol and openly issue cease and desist notices to countries that are fueling the problem whether they be Nigeria’s immediate neighbors or world powers that tele-guide the situation remotely.
This will include a review of the MNJTF to see if there is any sense of Nigeria keeping up with the charade of collaborating with countries that do other things to undermine its interests.
“We demand strong commitment from all concerned to end Boko Haram’s activities and movement across borders to commit crimes in Nigeria.
It is not acceptable that Nigeria’s neighbors act as breeding grounds to revive Boko Haram each time it is defeated here on our soil.
Consequently, we unequivocally demand implementation of the resolutions that were agreed at the conference organized by Nickolas Sarkozy as French president – parties to that conference had promised to tame Boko Haram at their respective bordes.
“SHAC appeals to the United Nations to urgently set up a joint action task team around the Lake Chad Basin as the result of the complacency on this matter will eventually haunt all stakeholders.
The practice of waiting until situations get totally out of hand before acting must not be allowed to apply in this particular case.
A strong consideration to be made is to treat the countries colluding with Boko Haram as interfering to destabilize Nigeria, which is not allowed.
“We will conclude by urging the Nigerian military not to relent in their push against Boko Haram and should treat foreign support for the terrorists as an impetus to evolve new strategies for dealing with the threat they pose to the country’s civilian population.
The vulnerable civilians rely on the military for protection and cannot be let down for any reason. We further urge the military, in view of the foreign support for Boko Haram, to audit its personnel with a view to identifying and fishing out those that might have been compromised and are on the take to sabotage the troops by sharing sensitive information to supposed media workers that in turn embed same in their stories to pass on to terrorists.”