ANCYL condemns Boko Haram

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IOL NIGERIA-GIRLS-USA_0521_1A Reuters Nigerian teenager Deborah Peters, the sole survivor of a Boko Haram attack on her family in 2011, holds up a sign referring to the abducted Chibok girls. File picture: Kevin Lamarque

Johannesburg - The ANC Youth League on Wednesday joined the thousands across the world in condemning the acts of Nigerian Islamic group Boko Haram.

The league called the abduction of over 200 schoolgirls cowardice and deplorable.

“There can never be any excuse for their dreadful conduct, it is completely unacceptable and constitutes nothing more than a criminal and terrorist act that should be met with the strongest condemnation,” spokesman Bandile Masuku said in a statement.

“As the ANC Youth League, we expect the government of Nigeria to be up to the inevitable task of arresting and prosecuting these terrorists.”

Masuku called on Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan to ensure the return of the girls.

“The abduction of innocent schoolgirls for their use as a bargaining tool against the government is illegal, indefensible, and has no place in a modern Africa that seeks peace and socio-economic development of its people,” he said.

Masuku said they were encouraged by the new resolve proclaimed by West African regional leaders at a security summit in Paris on May 17 that Boko Haram had become a regional threat.

He urged the regional leaders to remain steadfast in their commitment and political will to ensure the success of the action plan adopted at the summit.

He said while the league appreciated the assistance that France, the United Kingdom, the European Union, and the United States had pledged, it remained concerned that the summit was held in foreign land at the initiative of a foreign power.

“... we believe that African Union must rise to occasion and Africans must have necessary capacity to respond to African problems,” he said.

He warned foreign nations not to use the incident as an opportunity to get their hands on natural resources of Africa and not “to demand their share as return for assistance”.

Masuku said it was important that African leaders moved quickly to operationalise various peace and security initiatives within the African Peace and Security Architecture, especially the African Standby Force, in order to increase the AU's capacity for rapid response. - Sapa


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