Nigeria’s fight against terrorism may have received a major boost yesterday, as the King of Jordan Abdullah II in New York donated military hardware to Nigeria and pledged to supply additional helicopters to the country to strengthen and help Nigeria in the fight against terrorism.
President Buhari who was accompanied to the bilateral meeting, the third of its kind since the inception of the current administration, by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), and Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Professor Tijjani Bande described the donation as a reflection of Jordan’s true concern for Nigeria’s security.
Speaking during a bilateral meeting with King Abdullah II shortly after his address to the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly, the President said the very expensive donation of about 200 Armoured Fighting Vehicles “reflects true concern for Nigeria’s security situation and genuine goodwill towards a friendly nation.”
A statement by President Muhammadu Buhari’s chief spokesman, Mr. Femi Adesina, said Buhari thanked King Abdullah for the donations.
Adesina added that Buhari reassured the Jordanian king of Nigeria’s commitment towards the “proposed Aqaba Process with countries in the Gulf, as well as Nigeria’s willingness to play a leading role in bringing together countries in the West African sub-region into this collective security arrangement”.
He also said the president pledged Nigeria’s continued desire for enhanced bilateral ties with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, adding that the king told Buhari that his National Security Adviser would soon be working out the final details of the Aqaba Process with his Nigerian counterpart.
According to him, the Jordanian King had earlier informed Buhari that his kingdom would open an embassy in Abuja in the next few months, and expressed appreciation to the Nigerian government for its support.
“Soon after President Buhari took office in 2015, the Jordanian king had offered a hand of friendship, cooperation and support to Nigeria in its fight against terrorism and the insurgency.
“This resulted in the National Security Adviser undertaking two visits to Jordan to follow up on issues previously discussed with the king, and the donation of military hardware and pledge of further support.
“These gestures are aimed at enhancing Nigeria’s operational capabilities in the fight against terror both within the country and the Lake Chad Basin which affects neighbouring Cameroun, Chad and Niger where the Multinational Joint Task Force is engaging the Boko Haram insurgents and terrorists.
“The National Security Adviser’s second trip to Jordan on the invitation of the king in January 2016 to attend the Third Aqaba Process, also resulted in a renewed commitment between the two countries to consider multilateral action in confronting the menace of terrorism by replicating the Aqaba arrangement which the Kingdom of Jordan has with East African countries battling protracted terrorist menace.
“Nigeria has agreed to work with countries in the region on a similar arrangement with Jordan. It is anticipated that the First Aqaba Process for Nigeria and sister countries within the sub-region with Jordan will be held in late November or early December 2017,” the statement added.
It would be recalled that soon after President Buhari took office in 2015, the Jordanian King had offered a hand of friendship, cooperation and support for Nigeria in its fight against terrorism and insurgency. This resulted in the National Security Adviser undertaking two visits to Jordan to follow up on issues previously discussed with the King, and the donation of military hardware and pledge of further support.