Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State has presented six demands to President Muhammadu Buhari, including recruitment of foreign mercenaries to help tackle Boko Haram terrorists.
Zulum made the demands when he granted audience to a federal government delegation led by Senate President Ahmad Lawan, which was in Maiduguri on a condolence visit over the Saturday’s killing of 43 farmers by suspected Boko Haram members in rice fields.
Zulum requested for foreign fighters less than 24 hours after President Buhari said he had given the Nigerian military forces all they required to tackle Boko Haram fighters.
Zulum’s call on Monday was reminiscent of what happened ahead of the 2015 general election when the then President Goodluck Jonathan, bowing to pressure, sort for the support of mercenaries from South Africa.
Jonathan also entered into an agreement with the Chadian President, Idriss Deby, whose troops equally participated in the clearing of the shores of the Lake Chad region, while the South African mercenaries confronted Boko Haram fighters around the Sambisa forest and the Mandara Mountains, a development that paved the way for elections in the affected locations.
It was learnt that after Jonathan left, the special agreement with Chad was not renewed while the South African mercenaries were also asked to go.
Some security experts noted that the new Buhari administration at the time should have swallowed its pride and allow “the partnership” between Nigeria, South Africa and Chad to decimate the terrorists and bring back peace to the North East and beyond, saying “severing” the relationship was partly responsible for the lingering problem.