U.S. lawmakers okay five-year action against Boko Haram
World Bank votes $50m for northeast rehabilitation
The United States’ House of Representatives has passed a legislation directing the country’s Secretaries of State and Defence to jointly develop a five-year strategy to assist Nigeria’s government in its fight against Boko Haram.
The measure is also aimed at providing assistance to members of the Multi-National Joint Task Force (MNJTF) and international partners, who had offered support to counter the regional threat of the Boko Haram insurgency.
The legislation, passed by a voice vote, was entitled H.R. 3833/S.1632 and introduced by Congresswoman Frederica Wilson (D-Florida) and Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) to help combat Boko Haram specifically. The strategy is also aimed at addressing the crushing humanitarian and educational crises that Boko Haram had created.
Congresswoman Wilson, in a statement was quoted as saying: “Boko Haram captured my attention and the headlines when the terrorist group kidnapped 276 Nigerian schoolgirls from their dormitory rooms 968 days ago. For most of the world, the Chibok girls symbolised the horror that is Boko Haram, but the damage its members have wrought goes far deeper.”
Collins, who authored and originally introduced the bill, averred that Boko Haram had pledged allegiance to ISIS and it continued to commit terrible acts of brutal violence against civilians in Nigeria as well as in Chad, Cameroon and Niger Republic.
Collins, describing Wilson as a willing and able partner in the effort to pass the bipartisan legislation, explained that it requires a five-year strategy to pursue Boko Haram and it would bolster efforts of the U.S. throughout the region.
The senator further stated that for more than two years, lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives have been united in raising awareness of the #BringBackOurGirls movement, demanding the safe return of the abducted Chibok pupils and the end of Boko Haram’s carnage.
Meanwhile, the World Bank through the FADAMA III project has committed $50million intervention fund for the rehabilitation of persons affected by Boko Haram terror across the six North Eastern states of Borno, Adamawa, Yobe, Taraba, Bauchi and Gombe.
The project, which kicked off this year under the FADAMA III Additional Financing programme, will last till 2019 and about 640 communities are targeted with the aim of bringing life to the hopeless in the areas that have been destroyed by the insurgents.