Shet­tima Funds 20,000 Civil­ian JTF For Six Years

Sunday Trust - - FRONT PAGE - From Ibrahim Sawab, Maiduguri

The vol­un­teer vig­i­lante youth groups pop­u­larly known as Civil­ian JTF that trained on counter-in­sur­gency op­er­a­tions and cur­rently help­ing the mil­i­tary fight Boko Haram in­sur­gency in Borno State and en­vi­rons, has been sup­ported by Gover­nor Kashim Shet­tima alone since their in­cep­tion six years ago.

Since 2013, the Civil­ian JTF fight­ers have been play­ing cru­cial roles in in­tel­li­gence gath­er­ing, easy iden­ti­fi­ca­tion and ar­rest of sus­pected in­sur­gents and sup­port­ing in the war fronts.

Shet­tima’s Spe­cial Ad­viser on Com­mu­ni­ca­tions and Strat­egy, Malam Isa Gusau said this dur­ing a live in­ter­view as guest of “The Morn­ing Show” on Arise (cable) News In­ter­na­tional, in Ikoyi La­gos on Satur­day.

Arise which airs on DSTV world-wide, is a sis­ter or­ga­ni­za­tion to ThisDay news­pa­pers.

He said de­spite ef­forts by po­lit­i­cal mis­chief mak­ers to down­play his con­tri­bu­tions on the fight against Boko Haram, Gover­nor Shet­tima-led govern­ment has from 2013 to date, re­mained the sole fi­nanciers of hun­dreds of suc­cess­ful op­er­a­tions car­ried out by more than 20,000 vol­un­teers of the Civil­ian JTF.

Ac­cord­ing to him, their con­tri­bu­tions in the fight against Boko Haram has been roundly ac­knowl­edged by the mil­i­tary, all other se­cu­rity stake­hold­ers, past and in­cum­bent fed­eral ad­min­is­tra­tions as well as res­i­dents of Borno State.

The spokesman said it was a laugh­able irony that in re­cent days some “mis­chief mak­ers are do­ing ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble to smear Gover­nor Shet­tima over the Boko Haram cri­sis, whereas the same mis­chief mak­ers reg­u­larly ac­knowl­edge the roles played by pa­tri­otic mem­bers of the civil­ian JTF.

He, how­ever, added that “They de­lib­er­ately ig­nore the fact that in the last six years, Gover­nor Shet­tima has been the sole per­son giv­ing ap­provals for the op­er­a­tional ve­hi­cles and lo­gis­tics, re­cruit­ment, train­ing, pay­ment of al­lowances, kit­ting and sur­veil­lance equip­ment to these over 20,000 he­roes, un­der the Civil­ian JTF that have given ev­ery­thing to the fight against Boko Haram.”

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