The Northern Elders Forum (NEF)
said that the former president Goodluck Jonathan did not heed their advice on the best approach to handling the war against Boko Haram.
Speaking in an interview on Wednesday, November 4, Dr. Paul Unongo, the deputy national leader of NEF said Jonathan would have taken the credit for defeating the insurgents if he had not ignored their recommendation, The Punch reports. According to him, those recommendations were being used by President Muhammadu Buhari now.
Unongo said: “We (NEF) have not
written any letter to President Buhari on Boko
Haram. I am sure he picked up the recommendations we
sent to Jonathan and they are working for him. NEF
didn’t condemn Jonathan because he is Jonathan.
We gave Jonathan a piece of advice.
“We were talking to him for
over two years. We told him that he cannot fight Boko
Haram with obsolete equipment and we told him
that the battle was not only about using arms. We
told him to use psychological intelligence.
“We actually wanted him to
get the credit for winning the deadly Boko Haram
war. He (Jonathan) doubted the kidnap of the
Chibok girls and actually was seen on the television
dancing azonto. Our people were being killed in
hundreds. This was the height of insensitivity and
we just had to complain about that. We complained
The NEF leader wondered why the former
president refused to implement the forum’s
blueprint to end Boko Haram insurgency.
Unongo faulted opinion leaders who described
Buhari’s anti-corruption war as selective, saying
the president’s body language showed that he
would not tolerate corruption. He added that the group would not hesitate to criticise the new government if it acted against the wishes of the masses.
Three days ago, Tanko Yakasai, the chairman of
the Northern Elders Council (NEC) warned President Buhari against the selective persecution of perceived political opponents in the name of fighting corruption. He noted that the overwhelming feeling today was that the country was returning to dictatorship.
He also dismissed claims by the military that northern leaders are the sponsors of Boko Haram, challenging the authorities to name the so-called sponsors they claimed were backing the insurgents.
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