On the third anniversary of the abduction
of the Chibok school girls, the UK
government on Friday restated its
commitment to support Nigeria in the
fight against Boko Haram and terrorism.
The assurance was contained in a
goodwill message to the Nigerian
government by the UK Foreign Office
Minister, Tobias Ellwood, and the
International Development Minister
counterpart, James Wharton.
“Our thoughts are with the Chibok girls
who remain missing, their families and all
those abducted by Boko Haram. We are
working side by side with Nigeria in the
fight against Boko Haram and call for the
release of all those who have been taken.
“During our visits to Nigeria last year, we
heard how people’s lives have been
devastated by Boko Haram. We are
committed to supporting Nigeria in the
fight against these barbaric terrorists.
More than 22,500 Nigeria military
personnel have received UK training, with
a significant number deployed on counter
insurgency operations in north-east
“Lasting stability and security requires all
parties to work together to address the
long-term causes of the conflict, and the
empowerment of women and girls must
be at the heart of this process. The UK
was one of the first to respond to the
humanitarian crisis in north-east Nigeria,
and continues to reach millions of people
who have been forced from their homes
with lifesaving support to improve
education, nutrition and basic health
services to stop people dying from
starvation and hunger.
“We will not be deterred from supporting
Nigeria to tackle violent extremism and
build peace for the people of north-east
Since 2014, the UK government said it
significantly increased its support to
Nigeria to help fight against Boko Haram.
The support was through the provision of
a substantial package of military,
intelligence and development support.
Apart from contributing £5 million to the
Multi National Joint Task Force, a regional
force against Boko Haram, comprising
troops from Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon,
Chad and Benin, the UK government also
provided £74 million last year.
The fund was for emergency food, shelter
and health care for hundreds of
thousands of people displaced by Boko
Haram’s violent insurgency.
Besides, one of its development agencies,
the Department for International
Development, DFID,significantly increased
its humanitarian support from £1 million
in 2014 to £74 million last year, the
In health, the UK government said DFID
also supported the International
Committee of the Red Cross, who have
helped restore basic health care services
for over 500,000 people affected by
conflict, provided 150,000 immunisations
for children and enabled over 20,000
women to give birth safely.
In 2016 alone, it said the agency reached
over a million people with food and
provided 34,000 children suffering from
malnutrition with lifesaving treatment.
In education, DFID said it also supported
access to education for over 25,000
marginalised children in the north-east.
The beneficiaries included girls, through
an innovative approach that engages
government, community members and
religious leaders to introduce the
teaching of literacy in the local language,
numeracy and basic science alongside
Quranic education in 200 “Integrated
Quranic schools” (IQS).
“DFID supported research suggesting
strong demand from communities
affected by the conflict with Boko Haram
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