–Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA)- From Mike SOGBOLA (North-East Bureau Chief):
Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum has said that the war on insurgency should have been over had it not been for sabotage.
The war on Boko Haram has been since 2009 and despite huge budgetary allocations and investment, the end is not yet in sight.
The attack on Borno Governor by alleged insurgents in Baga last week after he had received an “all clear” from the military to go into the town, has reinforced the allegation that the war has never been dusted because of sabotage.
It would be recalled that recently large number of soldiers resigned from the Nigerian Army with claim that their lives is put at risk in the war that there seems to be no plan of winning.
Speaking to two of his colleagues on Sunday, Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi) and Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa) who represented the Progressive (All Progressives Congress) Governor in the North to pay a solidarity visit on him, Zulum alerted President Muhammadu Buhari of sabotage on the side of those involved in fighting terrorism in the North East.
He alleged that this was the reason there is yet no end in sight to the war on in insurgency in the Northeast.
He said some elements are trying to frustrate the effort of the government in ending the insurgency and President Muhammadu Buhari needs to know the truth.
He said: “Let me also re-echo my previous position with respect to the level of insurgency in Borno State, I earlier said that the gravity of the insurgency cannot be compared with what has happened between 2011 to 2015, and 2015 to date. Yes, it’s true. The President has done well.
“But there’s sabotage in the system that will not allow insurgency to end; the President has to know this very important point. When he came to Maiduguri two months ago, I said so because between 2011 to 2015, at a time, almost about 22 LGAs were under the insurgents.
“Out of the four main roads that lead to Maiduguri. only one was functional.”
He called on the President to examine the security situation in the region critically, to ensure the effort of his administration is no longer undermined.
The governor told his colleagues that he has come to know that the military has taken over the farmlands of residents.
He said there was no justification for this, stressing that the residents displaced by insurgency should not have been prevented from returning to their ancestral homes.
Zulum said: “There is one very important question that we need to ask, why is the insurgency not ending? There’s sabotage in the system and there’s a need for the President to examine the current situation with a view to resolving it.
“We have a huge population and people do not have access to their agricultural lands, and poverty is one of the causes of insurgency; why are you not allowing people to go back to their ancestral lands so that they will go and earn their living?”
He asked that: “A situation where our Nigerian military are farming the lands, denying access to the common man to farm; what justification do they have for not allowing our people to go back to their ancestral homes?”
The Chairman of the APC Northern Governors Forum, Atiku Bagudu said they came to the state to show the governor that they are with him and that they feel his pains.
He said the governor is known to be hardworking and appreciated by all.
He added that the entire governors are with him and are ready to support him in the onerous task of seeing the back of insurgency.
On hand to received the visiting governors are the state Deputy Governor, Umar Kadafur, the former Governor of the state, Senator Kashim Shettima, as well as Senator Ali Ndume and members of the State Executive Council.