Nigeria marks Independence Day amid challenges

By Africa news with AP

Nigeria was on Friday celebrated its 61st Independence day in Abuja, despite growing security challenges and a badly depreciated currency.

In a televised address President Muhammadu Buhari said the last 18 months had been “some of the most difficult periods in the history of Nigeria since the civil war.”

The country as seen in recent times more deadly attacks on local communities in remote villages and an increase in kidnapping for ransom that has continued in a cycle of violence that has defied measures introduced by authorities, including the deployment of thousands of security operatives to restore peace.

Buhari pledged to “continue to work on dialogue based solutions to address legitimate grievances.”

Speaking to The Associated Press in Abuja, one resident said the country had “not been able to make so much progress” due to “systematic corruption”, but was hopeful that “the new breed of leadership” could move the country forward.