Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has condemned, in strong terms, the ambush, attack and abduction of soldiers, and civilians who were carrying out their duties to the nation in the Lake Chad Basin Frontier Exploration.
He described the development as ‘appalling’.
This was even as he had ordered the continued search and rescue missions to locate and ensure the freedom of all remaining abducted persons as soon as possible, urging that all available and expedient means be used in the circumstances.
According to him, the objective of the exercise which he described as patriotic, is to open up new areas for oil exploration for the common good of all Nigerians.
Osinbajo who regretted the terrorist attack resulted in a number of deaths of hardworking and innocent Nigerians, and the abduction of some, said those who lost their lives were selfless.
In a statement by his spokesman, Laolu Akande, the Acting President commiserated with the families, relatives and associates of those who lost their lives in what he called “despicable onslaught” and wished the injured speedy recovery.
Osinbajo said he had at the emergency meeting with the Military chiefs on Thursday, issued fresh directives to the Nigerian military and all security agencies to immediately scale-up their efforts and activities in Borno State in order to maintain a strong, effective control of the situation and secure lives and property.
While commending the military for the progress already recorded with the rescue of some of the abducted, the Acting President assured that justice would be pursued for the victims and against those who engage in this kind of unacceptable, criminal and terrorist conduct.
He also paid tribute to the resilience, courage and bravery of officers and men of the Nigerian Armed Forces for their gallant endeavours and sacrifices for the peace, security and territorial integrity of our country.
He also eulogised the Nigerian soldiers who had paid the ultimate price in this mission and others linked to the current insurgency, and gives a firm assurance that the welfare of the families of the soldiers will be prioritised.
Osinbajo also commended the diligence of the management and staff of the NNPC, and the lecturers/consultants from the University of Maiduguri in pursuing Federal Government’s resolve to grow our country’s current crude oil reserve base through potential exploration in the Lake Chad Basin, stressing that the government will by no means be dissuaded.
He said: “some of these extraordinarily selfless Nigerians from the NNPC and the University of Maiduguri put their lives on the line that we and generations to come will enjoy the resources of this land. We will never forget that sacrifice.”
Acting President assured, that not withstanding pockets of terrorists launching attacks recently in Borno State, that the federal government is not only on top of the situation, but will define the end of these atrocities by both winning the war and winning the peace in the North-east.