The President further revealed that the Boko Haram insurgents lost their insurgency campaign, became factionalised and mutated into a new form of terrorist threat.
Buhari said, “This occasion affords me another opportunity to briefly reflect on the state of the Nigerian nation, particularly regarding national security. At the inception of our first tenure in 2015, Nigeria was at a critical crossroads. The Boko Haram group was at the height of its infamy and virtually held Nigeria hostage. It constituted a clear and present danger to our corporate existence as a nation.
“After four years of gruelling work, I can report the progress that we have made in tackling the security challenges, with the combined efforts of our regional coalition partners, the Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies.
“In spite of the progress, the Nigerian state is still beset with some existential and fundamental challenges. The Boko Haram for instance, having lost their insurgency campaign, now factionalised and mutated into a new form of terrorist threat.”
He added, “Banditry and vandalism, kidnapping, pastoralists and farmers’ conflicts, cultism and political violence have become the new threats. Other crimes such as proliferation of small arms and light weapons, drug trafficking, drug and substance abuse and communal conflict, all add up to the security mix.
“The state of education, the youth bulge, unemployment, socio-political and ethno-religious divisions, fake news and hate speech all compound the security challenges.
“I’m committed to promoting a vision of a secure, safe, just, peaceful, prosperous and strong nation.
“Indeed, we shall be employing all elements of our national and human resources to ensure security, a just society, peaceful co-existence, national unity, prosperity and sustainable development, while promoting our good standing abroad.
“I believe that the graduates of the National Defence College Course 27 are sufficiently groomed in both character and learning to take up this challenge.”