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Buhari Is More Swift Than Jonathan Was On Boko Haram – Shettima




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Borno state governor, Kashim Shettima has said he is yet to criticize President Muhammadu Buhari on the insecurity challenge facing the state because he is sure of Buhari’s zeal to fight Boko Haram.

This, Shettima said when he convened an “extraordinary security meeting” to tackle the series of attacks by the sect, on the military and deteriorating security in the state.

He said the president is usually swift to action when he talks to him about issues concerning Boko Haram.

He said his relationship wit President Buhari is different from the one he had with former President Goodluck Jonathan, who wasn’t fully on ground to talk to him.

In recent weeks, the Boko Haram insurgent group has renewed attacks on the north-eastern state.

The group recaptured some communities and attacked the military base.

The governor said while he is saddened by the situation, he would rather assume a “position of strength” so as to inspire the military and citizens.

He added that he is so optimistic about the insecurity situation in the state that he sometimes boast the state is safer than Lagos.

Some persons have asked why I have not criticised the Buhari government or the Nigerian military over situations in Borno. My response to them is that unlike in previous years when I was treated as an enemy of the Presidency, I have from 2015 to date, gained unfettered access to the President,” Shettima said.

I see the Commander-In-Chief at the shortest request and I tell him my concerns, he listens to me with keen interest and in most cases, he takes measures. I have not had reason to be frustrated with the Presidency, unlike previous years.

“President Muhammadu Buhari is without the slightest doubt, devoted to the fight against Boko Haram. I believe that service chiefs, the IGP, the DG of DSS and heads of all para-military agencies share the commitment of Mr President.

“Let me say that even under the previous administration, I regularly supported and defended the military.

“I prefer to inspire our military and citizens. I prefer to make security matters as discrete as possible. There were times I managed to see the former president but our meetings were always under rush. There were times I resorted to writing him for the record. I remember one specific instance I wrote a strong letter in 2013, over serious concerns raised by the Nigerian Air Force command in Borno State, and I have to admit that President Jonathan took immediate measures on that.

“Sometimes, I unconsciously find myself boasting that Borno is safer than Lagos. I simply feel very bad to sound pessimistic about Borno. I so much believe in optimism.

“My greatest wish was and still is, not to bequeath Boko Haram challenges and IDP Camps to my successor. We wanted to, and still want to get Borno fully back to normal days.

“As a state government, we have done and will continue to do everything humanly possible in support of the fight against Boko Haram.”

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The security meeting, which held at the government house, Maiduguri, involved many sectors including security agencies, traditional rulers, media and legal practitioners.