Saraki calls for international conference on North East, Boko Haram

The Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, has called for international conference on North East and Boko Haram threat in Nigeria.
Saraki made the call during General Debate at the 137 Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly, yesterday at St. Petersburg, Russia.
Saraki, who lamented the havoc caused by insecurity in the region, said while Nigerian government was doing its best to tackle the problem, international interventions were necessary.
According to him, convening an international conference like the one convened in London on Somalia and Syria will go a long way in finding lasting solution to the problem in the region.
He said: “Nigeria’s North East region has suffered terribly as a result of the onslaught of Boko Haram insurgents.
“Two million Nigerians are internally displaced or have fled to neighbouring countries like the Lake Chad region, where 4.4 million people are threatened by food insecurity.
“Of the fund needed to address the problem, less than half has been raised. The UN has described the situation in the Lake Chad region as the most neglected humanitarian crisis in the world.
“The 8th National Assembly is at the forefront of improved coordination efforts to overcome institutional and logistic impediments in the way of getting aid for those in need.
“We have also made economic growth and greater investment the core of our legislative agenda.
“The sooner we deliver economic reforms and greater prosperity to all Nigerians, the sooner we can achieve more inclusive society and minimise societal divisions and grievances.”
Saraki further pointed out the need for government to attend to challenges in other parts of the country for sustainable peace.
According to him, Plateau State in the Middle Belt region of Nigeria has been faced with ethnic and religious conflicts, with more than 7,000 people killed in the last decade.
He said that the challenge of climate change led to shrinking of the Lake Chad, which could no longer sustain thousands of displaced persons camped along its receding banks, especially in the North of Nigeria.
He emphasised among other things, the need to tackle youth unemployment, poverty, religious intolerance and marginalisation, which were major factors of restiveness in the country.

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