Don’t sign defence pacts with US, France, Nigeria’s opposition NNPP warns Tinubu



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*Says similar pacts had failed in the past



“NNPP raised the alarm over such pacts as having disastrous implications for internal peace as well as our relationship with our neighbouring countries, especially those in the Sahel region.”


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The New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) has cautioned the Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led Federal Government to tread with maximum caution on signing any defence pact with the French Government or United States.

This caution, a fresh one coming from another quarters particularly a major opposition party in the country, was contained in a statement issued in Abuja by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Ladipo Johnson, dated May 5, 2024 and copy of which was sent to The DEFENDER on Sunday.

READ ALSO Activists warn Tinubu, NASS leadership against relocation of American, French bases from Sahel to Nigeria

According to the statement, the NNPP raised the alarm over such pacts as having disastrous implications for internal peace as well as our relationship with our neighbouring countries, especially those in the Sahel region.

READ ALSO How fighting to protect America, UK’s interests in Niger can cost Tinubu ECOWAS, Nigeria – Mahdi Shehu

The DEFENDER had reported concerns of some activists including Mallam Auwal Ibrahim Musa (Rafsanjani), Executive Director of Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), on Saturday while rejecting the plans by President Tinubu’s acceptance of the United States of America and France’s plans to relocate their military bases rejected and expelled from the  Republic of Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso to Nigeria.

They said since beginning of the foreign troops in those countries and others of the Sahel region, terrorism and damages to human lives, instead of abating, had increased.

Reacting to the report, the NNPP observed that such reported defence pacts would not necessarily fulfil their stated objectives, saying similar pacts had failed in the past.

“Countries like Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso have recently expelled the French and American soldiers from their bases and reports suggested they’re now lobbying to have a new military base in Nigeria, being at a geographically strategic location in the Gulf of Guinea,” it said.

This globalised multi-lingual online newspaper reports that the National Chairman of the NNPP, Dr. Ajuji Ahmed, according to the statement, was compelled to commission an expert group of researchers to look into the matter due to the general alarm it engendered and the overriding calls for caution by many respected citizens and members of the Party from various parts of the country.

“Going down memory lane, the NNPP stated that since the abrogation of the Anglo-Nigerian defence pact in the 1960’s, the country has resisted all attempts to recreate military bases in Nigeria and as such the current reported attempt must be subjected to rigorous debate and consensus from the generality of Nigerian citizens.

“The Party drew attention to the need to maintain a cordial relationship with affected neighbouring countries like Niger and Mali, suggesting that any defence pact with either France or the United States could impact negatively on Nigeria’s existing regional relationships, aggravate already damaged bilateral relations, and thereby disrupt regional equilibrium and peace.

“Moreover, a new defence pact of this nature will likely compromise our national interest, sovereignty and independence as well as further worsen the current traumatic economic situation of our country.

“Indeed, contrary to justification, the defence pact in the Sahel failed to actually achieve the key objective of fighting terrorism in the region.

“Based on this, the NNPP is gravely concerned, as a patriotic Political Party with the long term interest of our nation at heart, to advice the Federal Government to have a hard-headed look at the complications inherent in signing any defence pact with the French or American Governments.

“We have to be extremely cautious on this matter of defence pacts with both France and the United States”, the statement concluded.

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