The Vice Chairman of Nigerian Bar Association(NBA), in Maiduguri, Husseini Hala, has said that President Goodluck Jonathan's pronouncement that his government will end the menace of Boko Haram by the middle of this year can worsen the security crisis in the country.
He said that Boko Haram militants appear to have intensified their attacks in the region following Jonathan's statement just as residents in the area bear the brunt of the violence.
"We are seriously concerned because they have done nothing and the menace is increasing. The militants have been killing people day in, day out; there are a lot of attacks in Maiduguri, they come out to attack the military officers face-to-face," the legal practitioner lamented
Critics have accused the government over what they claim to be the administration's failure to control growing insecurity in northern Nigeria. They said that the government's violent crackdown on suspected Boko Haram members in recent months has escalated violence.
But the administration said that the country's security agencies were working hard to contain the security problems by the middle of this year.
"The stance of the elders of Maiduguri and the population is that they should look for a way of dialoguing with the members of the Boko Haram, so that we will have an end to this crisis," said Hala.
He also said that the government should embark on a confidence building measure so that residents could help with efforts to combat Boko Haram's security threat.
"The people they appointed said that the government is insincere in its move to see that the crisis is settled. They said, if the government is sincere, they are ready to settle. "This is the view of the people of Borno State. Government should negotiate with them so as to bring the crisis to an end."