By Sumaila Ogbaje
The Force Commander, Multinational Joint Task Force ( MNJTF), Maj.-Gen. Abdul-Khalifah Ibrahim, has pledged to ensure renewed synergy with other national forces to reinvigorate the fight against insurgency in the region.
The Chief, Military Public Information, MNJTF, Col. Muhammad Dole, in a statement on Friday, said Ibrahim made the pledge during a five-day working visit to the Republic of Cameroon.
At the African Union Continental Logistics Base (AU-CLB) in Douala, Ibrahim thanked the AU-CLB team for its professionalism and the unique storage of equipment.
He lauded the idea of the AU-CLB which, he said, was strategic and timely in view of the security challenges Africa was facing.
He called for more support from the AU headquarters for the AU-CLB to make it more functional.
While visiting the Cameroon’s Minister of Defence, Joseph Assomo and the Chief of Defence Staff, Lt.-Gen. Jean Meka, the MNJTF commander also pledged greater synergy and reinvigoration in the fight against insurgents.
He said the recent successes recorded in the Lake Chad region had led to the return of thousands of IDPs and refugees to their ancestral homes and the re-establishment of civil authority in some key towns.
He paid tribute to the gallant men of the CDF who paid the supreme sacrifice in the fight against terrorism, adding that the sacrifices of the heroes of freedom would never be forgotten.
At the 2nd Joint Military Region Headquarters in Doula, Ibrahim also emphasised the imperative and positive impact of collaboration with national forces.
He praised the Republic of Cameroon for being a stabilising factor in the region, as well as being a committed partner in the fight against terrorism.
He said the visit aimed at improving synergy, visibility and operational efficiency of the MNJTF in its fight against the Boko Haram insurgents.
In his response, the Cameroonian Minister of Defence, Joseph Assomo, said the idea of the MNJTF showed the unity of purpose of leaders of the Lake Chad Basin region in combating the scourge of Boko Haram and terrorism.
Assomo, who welcomed the surrender of the insurgents, warned that the fight was not yet over, adding that there was need to remain vigilant and take the fight to the insurgents.
He reiterated the support of the Republic of Cameroon for the MNJTF in its noble cause of eradicating terrorism in the region.
On his part, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) restated the commitment of the Cameroon Defence Forces (CDF) to partner with the MNJTF to ensure that it achieved its mandate.
Meka pledged to also continue to support the AU-CLB in its operations.
The MNJTF commander and his entourage were received by Col Billy Winter, the Chief of the Mission Support Unit and members of his team.
Ibrahim, along with his team, was briefed on the mandate of the AU CLB.
The Team Leader of AU-CLB, Col. Nanci Raoul, said the base was meant for African Standby Forces but could be of assistance to the MNJTF based on approval from AU HQ. (NAN)