Pretoria: The African Union (AU) has strongly condemned what it has labelled the despicable attacks that the Boko Haram terrorist group continues to commit in various parts of Nigeria.
AU Commission Chairperson Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma slammed the attack in Maiduguri, also in Borno state, during which a 10-year-old girl was used to detonate a bomb at a market, killing at least 20 people.
“The Chairperson of the Commission reiterates the AU’s full solidarity with the people and government of Nigeria, and expresses her deep sympathy to the families of the victims,” said the Commission.
In a statement issued on Monday, the Commission said it will expedite its consultations with the countries of the region towards the effective implementation of the relevant provisions of the communiqué adopted on this issue by the AU Peace and Security Council in November.
“The Chairperson of the Commission reiterates the AU’s commitment to continue working with Nigeria and the other countries of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC), as well as with Benin, towards the mobilisation of the required international support to the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) mandated by the countries of the region to combat the Boko Haram terrorist group,” the Commission said.
Dlamini-Zuma appealed to the larger international community to renew its unity and support to the countries of the region in order to defeat Boko Haram, which she said its only agenda is to “cause havoc, destruction and death”.
Dlamini-Zuma also stressed the urgency of a coordinated African and international response, in view of the increasing threat that Boko Haram and terrorism in general poses to regional peace and security.
Meanwhile, the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, said the UN stands ready to assist the Nigerian government and all affected neighbouring states in bringing an end to the violence and to alleviate the suffering of civilians with all available means and resources.
Nigeria’s Boko Haram fundamentalists had laid a siege on northern part of Nigeria with incessant bomb explosions and killings, forcing residents to flee to other parts of the West African country believed to be safer.
The group seeks to enshrine the Islamic Sharia law in the constitution of Africa’s most populous country.
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported that attacks in Borno state have uprooted about 7 300 Nigerians, forcing them into western Chad.
SOURCE: SOUTH AFRICAN OFFICIAL NEWS