Boko Haram: High level UN, EU delegation visit MNJTF

A high level UN and EU delegation has visited the Headquarters of the Multinational Joint Task Force in N’Djamena, Chad.

The spokesman of the task force, Colonel Timothy Antigha, said in a statement on Tuesday that part of the delegation was the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General to Central Africa, Francois Fall.

Antigha said others were Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General to West Africa and Sahel, Mohammed Ibn Chambas, and Special Representative of the European Union to the Sahel, Angel Losada.

Also in the delegation, according to Antigha, were the UN Resident Coordinator in Chad, Stephen Tull, and the Executive Manager of the Committee against Terrorism, Michelle Coninsk.

Speaking during the visit, Fall described the progress so far made by the ongoing “Operation Yancin Tafki” in tackling the Boko Haram terrorists in the Lake Chad region as “encouraging”.

He lauded the Force Commander, Major General Chikezie Ude, for the successes recorded in the operation.

Fall noted that the Boko Haram problem requires more than a military solution, adding that there was also need to examine and address the socio-economic underpinnings of the crisis.

Also speaking, Losada conveyed the support and solidarity of the EU to the MNJTF, assuring that the union would continue to partner the MNJTF, particularly in areas of political strategy and intelligence sharing.

In his contribution, Ibn Chambas noted that economic activities in Lake Chad area had been disrupted by the Boko Haram insurgency, as such a lot of efforts would be required to deal with the challenges.

Responding, the Force Commander commended members of the delegation for the visit, saying the fight against Boko Haram would not have been possible without the support of the international community.

Ude assured them that the MNJTF in conjunction with national forces would maintain its current posture in the region.

In a related development, a delegation from the UN Security Council also visited the MNJTF Tactical Headquarters in Diffa, Niger Republic.

Briefing the team, the Deputy Force Commander, Brigadier General Seydou Badjie, updated them on the current situation and challenges facing the MNJTF.

Responding, the leader of the delegation, Abdel Mahjid, said their mission was to assess the MNJTF’s operation with a view to making recommendations on how the UN could support the African-led missions.