The Nigerian government has said it will apply its weight and the required force needed to tackle bandits and other criminal elements in the country, saying it’s not interested in negotiating with the terrorists.
The country’s National Security Adviser, Babagana Monguno stated this on Thursday during a State House briefing in the nation’s capital Abuja.
According to Monguno, the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari is not interested in negotiation with bandits and other criminal elements as such will portray the government as weak and incapable.
He said, “The government is tackling the problem of insecurity, we’ve said this many times that there are two phases in solving this problem –the soft approach: talking, negotiating, and so on and so forth.
“While the government is not averse to talking to these entities, these human beings, I have to be very honest, the government has to apply its weight, that force that is required because you can’t even talk with people who are unreliable, who will turn out to do a different thing and people who will continue to hurt the society.
“So, basically, what the government wants to rely upon is to deal with this issue by using all the assets – military assets, intelligence assets to eliminate these people.
“If along the line, some of them are ready to come out and talk and negotiate, when the time comes, we will do that but for now, we can’t keep on dwelling on ‘Let’s dialogue’.
“Psychologically, it is not even good for us, it paints the picture of weakness, it paints the picture of incapacity and I, just like the governor of Kaduna State said, do not see any reason why we cannot, with what we have, deal with these elements.
“These are not people who are looking for anything that is genuine (or) legitimate; these are people who are just out to perform atrocities, to take calculated measures to inflict pain, violence on people.
“At the slightest opportunity, they go haywire. And so, it is important for us to realise that we are dealing with people who are not looking for anything, people who without provocation will give birth to their homicidal instincts. We must deal with them the way they have to be dealt with.”