President, Transitional Military Council of Chad, Lt. Gen. Mahamat Idris Deby Itno and President Muhammadu Buhari. Photo: Sunday Aghaeze
President Muhammadu Buhari has pledged Nigeria’s will to assist the Republic of Chad stabilise, and return to constitutional order.
The President made the pledge while hosting the President of the Transitional Military Council of Chad, Lt. Gen. Mahamat Idris Deby Itno, at the State House, Abuja.
Former President of the country, Marshal Idris Deby Itno, had died in battle last month while leading troops to confront insurgents, who had come in through Libya. The country set up the transitional council, headed by the son of the deceased, while a return to democratic order is expected in 18 months.
President Buhari said late Marshal Itno “was a personal friend, and a friend of Nigeria, and Chad has been very steadfast in defending Nigeria,” so the country should not hesitate to ask for Nigeria’s help in areas it deemed necessary. He noted that, Nigerians appreciate the role Chad had played in helping to combat terrorism, and that such collaboration was sure to continue.
On the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) and the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF), President Buhari said Nigeria would help strengthen such initiative.
Lt. Gen. Itno thanked Nigeria for the solidarity shown after the passage of the former President, noting that the main objective of the Transitional Military Council “is the security and cohesion of Chad”.
He gave assurance of democratic, free, fair polls in 18 months, saying his visit was to seek Nigeria’s support towards the transition of Chad to constitutional rule.