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Re: Zulum worsening security situation in Borno

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By Abubakar Yusuf

I read a piece written by One Imamudeen Abba from Maiduguri in Borno state, and from its contents, it had brought me to conclusions, if not totally, that some disgruntled and unpatriotic elements were still responsible for the continuous and unabated onslaughts on the hapless people of Borno state, as targets and the entire North East as a whole by the insurgents and bandits.

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I’m not a citizen of Borno state, but in my write up I will speak from my direct experience on a trip from Maiduguri town by road to Damaturu in Yobe state between 5pm on that faithful day to 10 pm when I arrived Damaturu, the Yobe State capital.

But it threw me off balance, from a submission of an average Bornu man to pass a vote of confidence and approach on the predecessors of the current Governor, Professor Engineer Babagana Umara Zulum, and at the same time cast aspersions on the current approach being deployed by the current administration. push({});

Perusing through his write up from one paragraph to the other, his only accusations was only the style and approach of Governor Zulum on the inactions of the security agencies, particularly the Military to nip in the bud the attacks of the Boko Haram insurgents in the last one year.

He accused Governor Zulum of an open secret that the Army and other arms of security agencies operates a toll gate, where monies or fines are being collected from innocent travellers plying the roads. This obviously is a statement of fact without contradictions.

He had forgotten that each administration has its own style of leadership as propagted by the Hausa proverb of ‘Sarki Goma, Zamani Goma.’

His own assessment of Zulum’s undoing is his attitude of fire brigade approach and opening of ‘can of worms’ of the security agents for public consumption, to serve as deterent and defeat the styles of attacks of the insurgents.

For me, it is in the public domain that the Military and other security agencies from the Maiduguri end of Borno state to Jigawa and Bauchi end of Yobe state, have established tolls for motorists and travellers round the clock, not even the period of curfew and restrictions of movements to all and sundry, who ply the war torn zone.

Funnily enough, politicians, top government officials both at the federal and state give notice for security protection whenever the need to visit their various constituencies arises, with a fee payable by the top political office holders to the Army and security agencies.

The appraoch of the two previous governors may not be in line with the Zulum’s administration, as both wealth of experience, knowledge and exposure in the administration of the state, may not be on the same template.

Engineer Zulum’s appraoch of both theory and practical may be borne out of his in-depth academic exposure geared towards achieving results and a lasting solution to the continuous attacks, from the Boko Haram dissidents.

As the Chief security officer of the state, his frequent alarms, was also borne out of lack of confidence from the general public particularly the affected areas whose threats always comes to reality after series of warnings and insinuations from the Boko Haram.

It baffles many Nigerians for a citizen of Borno state to bring the Governor to public disrepute before Nigerians, that many had described as a role model and one of the leading Governor in terms of performance, not only in securtiy, but in other areas in the current dispensation.

It is dangerous for the Military and other security agencies rather than toe the line of securtiy of lives and properties of the people of Borno people and the entire North East, than to devise media war against the constituted authorities to achieve inordinate ambition.

The social contract signed for four years first term with the people of Borno State by Professor, Engineer Babagana Umara Zulum as Governor of Borno state is to protect the lives of ordinary citizens of the state and Nigerian residents in Borno state, and not only the top public and government officials.

It is high time, the Militaty change the tactics and appraoch rather than crying wolf of civilian leaders scuttling their operation that does not stand the test of time, or address the prevailing securtiy threats.

For a war torn zone that even the state Governor and its top officials were exposed to several and series of attacks and security threats, yet the top heirachy of the security agencies is looking the other way round, and resorting to media war with the Governor, is unbecoming of public officers.

For Governor Zulum’s strides is still full of public commendation and prayers for his efforts against the connivance of securtiy agencies, who were supposed to protect the lives and properties of the people and government of Borno State.

It is high time the Militaty and other security agencies redesign the architects and intelligent gatherings, so as to nip in the bud, many cases of warnings and planned attacks from the camp of the Boko Haram insurgents.

Let them not see the exercise in Borno state and North East as a greener pasture to advance both their personal and self aggrandizement, as no amount of blackmail, war of words will deter the state government from stating the obvious happenings in the state.

A stitch in time they say saves nigh.

Abubakar Yusuf, a Public Affairs Analyst writes from Abuja.

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