Northern states governors yesterday said that the insurgency in North East region of the country, which has claimed thousands of lives, has gradually been halted.
The governors, who commended President Muhammadu Buhari on the fight against insurgency also declared that Boko Haram has been subdued.
Chairman of the Northern Governors’ Forum, Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State, who made the declaration during a meeting of the 19 governors in Kaduna, said: “In respect of the insurgency in the North East and as someone from the epicenter of the crisis, I can confidently confirm that the insurgency has been irredeemably halted and the insurgents themselves completely subdued.
“What remains now are few isolated pockets of suicide bombings which the recalcitrant remnants of the insurgents use as a last resort to attract attention and create unnecessary panic among the general population.
“Our profound gratitude obviously goes to Mr. President for fulfilling his promise to bring the insurgency to a complete halt.
We also like to extend our sincere appreciation to our gallant Military and other security agencies who, buoyed up by the President’s enthusiastic support and adequate and regular supply of the required military hardware and welfare incentives, were able to relentlessly pursue the insurgents and destroy their infrastructure, with the consequence that all the areas hitherto under their control or influence have been recaptured.”
Shettima, however, called on President Buhari to ensure the full restoration of civil authority in the recaptured areas in order to pave way for the safe return of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) to their homes.
He added: “This, undoubtedly, entails the reconstruction and rehabilitation of public institutions and structures such as local government secretariats, police stations, prisons, hospitals and clinics as well as schools, all of which were either partially or completely destroyed by the insurgents.
“Subsequently, officers of the Nigerian Police and those of the Civil Defense Corps could be deployed to maintain law and order and also stave off any intrusion into these communities.
In this way, our IDPs would be conveniently repatriated back to their homes while our soldiers who are in charge of the recaptured areas could be deployed to continue with their onerous task of pursuing the insurgents until they are totally decimated.”
Shettima lamented that the country was facing many security challenges, pointing out that “in the North West and North Central, the security situation is alarming as the issues of cattle rustling, kidnapping, banditry and the persistent conflict between farmers and cattle rearers are gradually assuming unacceptable proportions.”