Idriss Deby, Chadian President has claimed that he single-handedly called war on the extremist group, Boko Haram. The President slammed President Goodluck Jonathan, saying nothing would have been done if the war was left to him as Chad was never authorized the decision to fight them (Boko Haram).
Nigeria’s Goodluck Jonathan had claimed that after five years of tolerating the sect that killed thousands, he finally this January embarked on the serious effort to defeat Boko Haram to increase his dwindling approval ratings and also to allow voting in occupied territory, which was cited as a reason for the postponement of the first election dates; however the Chadians have said that this real war against the terrorists was decided upon unilaterally by President Deby in reaction to Boko Haram obstructing Chad’s trade routes with Nigeria and the economy of the landlocked nation.
He made quotes from Reuters saying:
“Officials from Chad, Niger and Cameroon say lack of cooperation from Nigeria has for months hampered efforts to put together a regional task force against Boko Haram. Chad was compelled to take unilateral action in January, under a deal that allows it to pursue terrorists into Nigeria, after Boko Haram violence started to choke off imports to its economy.”
But for a country proud to be a major African power, it would be an embarrassment to President Goodluck Jonathan as he seeks reelection for a smaller nation to tackle Nigeria’s security problems, diplomats say.
Chad has been ready to press deep into territory controlled by the Islamist group but Nigeria refused to let them.
“We turned back because Nigeria did not authorize us to go any further,” army spokesman Colonel Azem Bermandoa said.
But the Chadians say there have been no joint operations between the two forces. Nigeria has for months hampered efforts to put together a regional task force against Boko Haram.
Nigeria’s military spokesperson, General Chris Olukolade Wednesday denied the Chadian claims of Nigeria stalling Chadian aggression against the terrorists, stating that the Nigerian side has no qualms with the Chadians but leads the mission to liberate the nation.
The revelations from Chad appear to be fueling distrust, suspicion and tensions between Nigeria and its neighbors and dis-credits the leader of Africa’s most populous nation and a nation that was prior credited as having one of the best armies in Africa.
President Jonathan is yet to react to Chad’s claims of the small country having been unilaterally behind the drive to liberate Nigeria from the grasp of Boko Haram.
After Chad engaged Boko Haram in Dikwa, Nigeria chased Chad out with the excuse that the Nigerian side planned to drop bombs on Boko Haram in Dikwa. Chad later claimed Boko Haram leader, “Abubakar Shekau” escaped at Dikwa with the Nigerian intervention, and Chad’s president personally warned Shekau that the Chadians knew where he went to and will soon get him.