The Senate President, Sen. David Mark, said on Monday in Beijing, China, that Nigeria would spare no resources at its disposal in the fight against insurgency in the country.
Mark stated this at an interactive forum with members of the Nigerian community in Beijing.
“Boko Haram has become a real nuisance, and the menace is unacceptable. They have declared war on Nigeria and we will fight them with all the resources at our disposal.
“We will not allow it to go on for too long; government is very serious about it.
“It is an avoidable distraction and it is something we do not need at this point in our history when we are trying everything possible to bring development to Nigeria to attract foreign investors.
“So, the message should go out loud and clear to anyone who is either a sponsor or a member of Boko Haram that we will fight them with all resources at our disposal,’’ Mark said.
The Nigerian Charge d’affaires in Beijing, Mr Suleiman Tanko, who welcomed the Senate President on behalf of the Nigerian community, said Nigeria has a large community in China.
“We have 12,000 Nigerians in China; out of this number, 10,000 live in Guangzhou, and are largely in trading because. It is a little bit difficult to penetrate the real business system here,’’ Tanko said.
He, however, lamented that it was not easy for Nigerians to establish businesses in China, adding that this was an issue of serious concern to them.
“If any Nigerian tells you that he has a business here, then it means that he is married to a Chinese lady; otherwise it is only merely petty trading that Nigerains are engaged in here,’’ Tanko said.
He appealed to the Senate President to intervene on behalf of Nigerians willing to establish businesses in China so they could have easier access to facilities.
He expressed regrets that a large majority of Nigerians were staying in the country illegally due to strict visa regime of the country which, he noted, resulted in many of them being in jail.
“We have about 463 Nigerians in various jails. Ninety per cent of the crimes they committed are drug-related, and 90 per cent of them are from only one state in Nigeria,’’ Tanko said.
He said that the Nigerian mission in China was engaging the government of that state to find out how the embassy could intervene.
Tanko also urged Nigerian law enforcement authorities to be more proactive and responsive to ensuring proper screening of intending travellers.
“It is really embarrassing that most of those arrested came straight from Nigeria; and this is posing a huge embarrassment to Nigerians in China,’’ he said.