Costs of War: Nigeria spent $2.6bn in 2016 to fight Boko Haram – Olonisakin

Chief of Defence Staff, General Abayomi Olonisakin has announced that Nigeria spent more than $2.6 billion in curbing the humanitarian effects of Boko Haram insurgency.

Gen. Olonisakin made this statement in Washington D.C during the meeting of the ‘Global Coalition Working to Defeat ISIS’.

“After  over $2.6 billion  was spent by the Nigerian Government to address humanitarian needs in 2016 – more needs were seen when areas were recovered from Boko Haram.

“Many in this room joined us in Oslo, Norway just last February to show support with Nigeria.

“Coalition is fundamental. We, therefore, commend Secretary Rex Tillerson and President Donald Trump for remaining committed to fighting the global enemy of us all – terrorism,” Olonisakin said.

Olonisakin told the coalition at the meeting that Nigeria’s battle to eliminate Boko Haram is comparable to Iraq’s war with ISIS.

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“This meeting, therefore, will further strengthen our collective resolve and determination to destroy and defeat ISIS.

“To this end, Nigeria is prepared to work with the coalition in the pursuit of the first lines of efforts towards the realisation of the aims of the global coalition,” Olonisakin said.

“Let me also add that this meeting is of great importance to Nigeria.

“This is because, Nigeria’s effort to defeat the Boko Haram terrorists is viewed as part of wider efforts to combat violent extremism globally especially, the defeat of ISIS.

“Nigeria is open and willing to adopt strategies from the coalition that could further enhance its success story,” Olonisakin said.

Rex Tillerson, the United States Secretary of State, noted that the attendance of all stakeholders in fighting global terrorism is a signal of strength.

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“When the forces of ISIS tune into their TVs and their computer monitors, they will see the strength of a combined 68 nations and organisations.

“Together, we share a resolve to deal ISIS a lasting defeat. Our coalition is united in stopping ISIS resurgence, halting its global ambitions and discrediting its ideological narrative.

“And we’re ready to grow stronger and stay aggressive in this battle.

“President Trump, in his recent address to the joint session of Congress, made clear that it is the policy of the United States to demolish and destroy this barbaric terrorist organisation”.