President Muhammadu Buhari said to the US Secretary of State, Mr. John Kerry, that the anti-corruption crusade of his administration has been made tougher by the vigorous fightback by corrupt people in the country. He, however, assured that the battle would be won.
This was made known in a State House Statement issued on Thursday. Signed by Mr. Femi Adesina, Presidential Adviser on Media and Publicity, the statement said President Buhari and Mr. Kerry spoke on Wednesday, on the margins of the conference on climate change, COP22, in Marrakech, Morocco. President Buhari said corrupt people have accumulated a vast arsenal of illicit wealth, which they are deploying against the government on various fronts.
“But it is a war we are determined to win, and which we will win. People of goodwill are behind us, countries like America and many others are with us, and we will surely win,” the statement quoted the President as saying.
President Buhari also updated Mr. Kerry on the counter-insurgency war in the Northeastern part of the country, saying that efforts being made to tackle humanitarian problems caused by the insurgency. Part of these efforts, explained the President, is the setting up of a presidential committee under the leadership of General T.Y Danjuma, a man he described as having “high integrity.”
On resumption of violence in the Niger Delta region, which manifests in the sabotage of critical oil and power installations, President Buhari said the engagement process is proceeding speedily, but that the government is having difficulty bringing the main protagonists of the insurgency under one umbrella.
He expressed Nigeria’s satisfaction with American support on different fronts and assured that the economic challenges the country is currently facing are being frontally tackled, adding that the country will soon come out of the woods.
The US Secretary of State expressed delight at the many successes of the Buhari administration, pledging continued U.S support in the bid to overcome security, humanitarian, political, and economic challenges.
As the Barrack Obama administration exits next January, Mr. Kerry said he would love to continue engaging with Nigeria, even in a private capacity. He described President Buhari as a strong international partner in the battle against violent extremism.