Shet­tima flays al­le­ga­tion of mil­i­tary ties with Boko Haram

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Ya­haya Ibrahim, Maiduguri

Borno State Gover­nor Kashim Shet­tima yes­ter­day con­demned the al­le­ga­tion of col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween the Boko Haram and some sec­tions of the na­tion’s mil­i­tary, de­scrib­ing such al­le­ga­tion as un­fair, rep­re­hen­si­ble and dan­ger­ous to the sur­vival of the na­tion at the cur­rent phase of counter in­sur­gency op­er­a­tions.

The gover­nor was re­act­ing to me­dia re­ports which quoted an un­named sol­dier as say­ing that some mil­i­tary com­man­ders were work­ing with Boko Haram el­e­ments. An un­known sol­dier had made the al­le­ga­tion in an in­ter­view on VOA Hausa Ser­vice ra­dio.

But Shet­tima in a state­ment yes­ter­day de­bunked the claim, say­ing in­sur­gents would do ev­ery­thing to cause con­fu­sion and ma­nip­u­late people into dis­trust as cit­i­zens and es­tab­lish­ments, say­ing, “let’s not fall into their trap, lose fo­cus and be­come their mass vic­tims”.

“Of all the­o­ries be­ing linked to Boko Haram, the most dan­ger­ous as far as I’m con­cerned is to raise such griev­ous sus­pi­cion around our se­cu­rity forces. When cit­i­zens grow such sus­pi­cion and be­lieve in it, I’m afraid, Boko Haram can light fire­works to cel­e­brate a grand vic­tory of set­ting up cit­i­zens against the se­cu­rity agencies. Since last week, I have lis­tened to and read these me­dia re­ports with the hope that the is­sue will not get out of hand but it ap­pears the mat­ter is grow­ing and I find it very dis­turb­ing. I do not want to bother about the cred­i­bil­ity or other­wise of the sol­dier in ques­tion. I’m sure the se­cu­rity forces take this al­le­ga­tion se­ri­ously and they are in­ves­ti­gat­ing it as they should. I am not hold­ing brief for the armed forces but as gover­nor of Borno State ,whose area is un­for­tu­nately the worst hit, who has been closely work­ing with se­cu­rity agencies, I would rather en­cour­age con­fi­dence build­ing be­tween cit­i­zens and the armed forces so that in­tel­li­gence shar­ing can rise con­tin­u­ally and we don’t lose fo­cus in the counter in­sur­gency”, he said.

The gover­nor noted that the day cit­i­zens be­come sus­pi­cious of se­cu­rity agencies as col­lab­o­ra­tors with in­sur­gents the na­tion would drift to­wards chaos.

“We can­not af­ford that un­healthy de­vel­op­ment. Un­less it be­comes un­ques­tion­ably ev­i­dent, we must work as in­di­vid­u­als, groups and in­sti­tu­tions to pro­mote pub­lic trust in our armed forces to en­cour­age cor­dial­ity be­tween cit­i­zens and se­cu­rity agencies. We must rec­og­nize that at the mo­ment, the se­cu­rity agencies are all we’ve got, we should pre­serve their in­tegrity by at least giv­ing them the ben­e­fit of doubt”, he added.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Nigeria

© PressReader. All rights reserved.