Anti-terror fight: China pledges N2b military equipment support

Chinese government on Thursday, January 10, vowed to support the Nigeria’s counter-insurgency operations against Boko Haram in the northeast with military equipment worth N2 billion (about 50 million Yuan).

The Nation reports that Chinese ambassador to Nigeria, Zhou Pingjuan, said the support is part of the military to military cooperation consummated between the two countries during their bilateral agreements, last year.

Pingjuan made this vow during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Defence Minister Brig.-Gen. Mansur Muhammad Dan Ali and the Ambassador on behalf of the People’s Republic of China at the Ministry of Defence.

According to him, “In September 2018, President Muhammadu Buhari led a Nigerian delegation to China to attend the Africa-Chinese forum.

“At the forum, he held bilateral discussions with President Xi Jinping on several areas of cooperation, particularly in the area of military to military relations.

“At the meeting in China, an initial pledge of 6million Yuan was made in support of the Nigerian military. Now, another 50million Yuan (about N2 billion) has been made to support the counterinsurgency operation of the military.”

Noting that Nigeria and Chinese bilateral relations have continued to grow from strength to strength in economic and other areas of interests, Pingjuan said the implementation of the peace and security agreements contained in the MoU would further cement the relationship.

The Defence minister lauded the Chinese government for standing by Nigeria in the fight against terrorism, stating that the cankerworm has today become a global problem.

He said: “Insurgency is no longer a country’s problem alone. It is now a global problem. So countries must join hands together to fight and defeat this problem.”

He said Nigeria is committed to a strong and lasting relationship with China, expressing hope that the military to military cooperation and relationship would be pursued with vigour.

Meanwhile, we had reported that Nigerian former minister for education, Oby Ezekwesili, has criticised the decision of African countries to borrow from China, after the Asian country announced a $60 billion facility in aid and loan to Africa.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday, September 4, signed a loan agreement with China at the Forum on China-Africa (FOCAC) 2018 holding in Beijing where the Chinese government pledged to give $60 billion loan facilities to African countries, a quarter of which would be interest-free.

She then blamed African leaders, saying they lack the will to carry out bold and costly reforms that will attract private sector investment into critical sectors of the economy.

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