Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and Culture, on Monday, January 4 took a jab at those calling Nigeria a failed state, saying it takes exception to such assumptions.
Lai Mohammed who linked the claim to the security challenges in the country averred that characterization of Nigeria as a ‘failing’ state is a combination of wishful thinking of naysayers and evil machinations of those who don’t wish Nigeria well.
Affirming that Nigeria would rise to become a more respected member of the comity of nations, Lai Mohammed further insisted that the West African nation has made tremendous progress in tackling bandits and Boko Haram terrorists.
Recounting how insurgents launched attacks in various places in the country, the Minister said the recent swift response and rescue of the 344 kidnapped Kankara schoolboys in Katsina State from bandits attested to the claim.
He added that Buhari has continued to provide all the necessary platforms on land, air and sea to support the fight against criminals and terrorists in the country, and also leading the country in making progress in many areas including infrastructural development, agriculture and power.
“You would remember that for the past two decades or so, some pseudo-analysts have been predicting the country’s implosion.
“That has not happened, hence they have found a new watchword – failing or failed state!
”It’s all a ruse aimed at depicting Nigeria as being in a constant state of anarchy so they can achieve their nefarious objectives for the country.
“If Nigeria was not a ‘failing’ state when a large slice of its territory equivalent to the size of Belgium was under the occupation of Boko Haram, which collected taxes, installed and deposed emirs, is it now that no territory is under the terrorists that Nigeria will be a failing state?
“If Nigeria was not a failed state when bombs were raining on towns and cities in Kano, Kaduna, Plateau, Borno, Yobe, FCT and other states, is it now that such bombings have stopped that Nigeria will be described as a ‘failing’ state?
“If Nigeria was not a ‘failing’ state in those years that Christian and Muslim worshippers needed to be screened to even enter their places of worship, is it now that the siege on places of worship has ceased that Nigeria will be described as a ‘failing’ state?
“Have we forgotten the constant attacks on military and security formations like Giwa Barracks (Maiduguri), Mohammed Kur Barracks (Bama), Monguno Barracks (Monguno), Airforce Base (Maiduguri), New Prison (Maiduguri) and numerous police stations?
“The fact that these attacks and bombings have stopped is a testimony to the progress we have made in tackling terrorism which, by the way, is not like a conventional warfare.
“The stoppage of the attacks didn’t happen by accident. It is therefore mischievous for anyone to discountenance the progress we have made in tackling insecurity, in building and upgrading infrastructure and in diversifying the economy, among others.
“The Federal Government rejects this characterisation of Nigeria as a ‘failing’ state, which is a combination of the wishful thinking of naysayers and the evil machinations of those who don’t wish Nigeria well.”