President Muhammadu Buhari has solicited the support of non-state actors including civil society organisations, non-governmental organizations and development partners in the fight against terrorism and transnational crimes.
Buhari, who was represented by the National Security Adviser (NSA), retired Maj.-Gen. made the call at the Accra Initiative Summit of Heads of State and Government, on Tuesday in Accra, Ghana.
This is contained in a statement from the NSA made available to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.
Buhari said the fight against terrorism and other transnational crimes required the active participation of all spheres of society, including non-state actors.
The President expressed appreciation to the various partners of the Accra Initiative who keenly supported the actualisation of the various meetings taking place in Ghana.
He said that Nigeria observed the proceedings of the Accra Initiative, promising to take note of the report of the Non-State Actors Conference and Technical Meeting held from Nov. 17 to Nov. 18.
Buhari acknowledged that West African countries have been confronting myriad of security challenges, including terrorism, piracy in the Gulf of Guinea, human and drug trafficking, illegal mining, and poaching among others.
The President commended the various efforts and activities of the Accra Initiative against terrorists and criminal elements.
He also promised to take note of the Communique of the 5th Extraordinary Session of Ministers in Charge of Security and Defence of the Accra Initiative.
Buhari said he will appoint a focal person to serve at the Accra Initiative Multinational Joint Force Headquarters in Tamale, Ghana.
The Accra Initiative was established in 2017 by Benin Republic, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and Togo to prevent spillover of terrorism from the Sahel.
It was also to address transnational organised crime and violent extremism in member countries’ border areas.
It could be recalled that in 2020, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed on security and intelligence cooperation among member countries of the Accra Initiative.
Between 2018 and 2022, the Initiative carried out four joint military operations, code named Operation Koudanlgou. (NAN)