Eminent Northerners To Tinubu: Reject Bid To Site US, French Bases In Nigeria

President Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Some eminent northern leaders Friday cautioned against allowing the United States and the French governments to relocate their military bases from the Sahel to Nigeria. 

In an open letter to President Bola Tinubu and the leadership of the National Assembly, the leaders said the federal government should not succumb to such pressure.

Those who signed the letter include Professor Abubakar Siddique Mohammed of the Centre for Democratic Development, Research and Training (CEDDERT), Zaria; Professor Kabiru Sulaiman Chafe, a former Minister of State for Petroleum Resources,  representing the Arewa Research and Development Project (ARDP), Kaduna; Professor Attahiru Muhammadu Jega, who is a former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC); Professor Jibrin Ibrahim from the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), Abuja; Auwal Musa (Rafsanjani) of the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CCISLAC) Abuja; and Y. Z. Ya’u from the Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD), Kano. 

According to the letter, the American and French governments have allegedly  been aggressively lobbying Nigeria, along with other Gulf of Guinea countries, to sign new defence pacts that would allow them to redeploy their troops, expelled from Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger.

The signatories expressed concern that Nigeria, being the most strategically located among the Gulf of Guinea countries, may succumb to this pressure, thereby jeopardising its defence and internal security.

“The recent expulsion of French and American troops from Niger due to their perceived ineffective presence raises questions about the efficacy of hosting foreign military bases”, the citizens said in the open letter.

They also argued that the primary goal of these bases, ostensibly to combat terrorism in the Sahel, has not been achieved, as terrorism has only escalated since those camps were established.

“It is important to clearly state that there are only dangers and no gains from such military operations.

Daily Trust

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