BY SONI DANIEL
YOLA—Adamawa State Governor, Murtala Nyako, yesterday, slammed President Goodluck Jonathan over his claim that the failure of Northern governors to provide basic education for their people was responsible for the spread of insurgency in the region.
Nyako, who described the President’s claim as unfortunate, insisted that it was the poor leadership exhibited by the Jonathan administration that had aided and abetted the rising spate of terrorism in the North.
Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State on his part was more reserved, saying that the president may have been misquoted based on what he said were clear indications that the administration in Borno inherited the insurgency and had tackled it within the resources available to it.
Jonathan had at a Peoples Democratic Party rally in Bauchi on Saturday spit fire, accusing the governors of not doing enough for their people and always blaming their misfortune on bad leadership exhibited by the centre.
He noted that the failure on the part of the governors to cater for the basic education needs if the citizens was responsible for the insurgency that had engulfed the area.
But Nyako, who spoke through his director of Press and Public Affairs, Ahmad Sajoh, stated that it was the failure on the part of the Jonathan Presidency to tackle insurgency with the required political will that had given rise to the escalation of terrorism in the North East.
He pointed out that governors could not be held responsible for the spread of insurgency in the north since Jonathan, as the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Nigerian armed forces was in charge of all security matters.
Nyako said: “For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to state categorically that if there is any proof of bad governance, it will be located in the way and manner the President executes his priorities and the kind of statements he and his spokespersons make.
“Governors are not and cannot be held responsible for security challenges since they have no control over security apparatus. The President is the Commander-in-Chief with powers over the Armed Forces, Police and other security agencies.
Nyako stated that Jonathan had been misled to believe that his administration had done much in the north when the average citizen is yet to feel the impact of the government in any facet of life.
On the issue of arming the insurgents, Nyako challenged the Presidency to institute an independent professional enquiry into the sources of weapons used by the insurgents.
The governor said it amounted to pure blackmail for Jonathan to always blame others for arming the insurgents when all the security, intelligence and diplomatic apparatus are in the hands of the President to deploy in fishing out their sponsors, financiers and strategic commanders of the terrorists.
He said: “ We do not have the resources to cover the level of sophistication displayed by the insurgents in their operations. We do not have command over the Military as to deploy them away from strategic targets of the insurgents or allow the insurgents safe passage during curfew hours.
“Our states hardly receive enough allocations to even meet our most basic needs let alone spend it carelessly. In addition, we have the added responsibility of carrying the burdens of the Federal authorities in our state. Moreover, we do not have the moral burden of missing monies not accounted for on our heads as is the case with the Federal Government.
“Nigerians should hold the Jonathan administration responsible for all the security challenges in the country including insurgency, oil theft, kidnapping for ransom and armed robbery.
“No matter what the President says or does, this government has failed Nigerians. It has turned out to be a “Government of impunity by the incompetent for the advancement of corruption.” The signs of incompetence are everywhere,” Nyako said.
In his reaction articulated by his spokesman, Isa Gusau, Shettima said:
“Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State has the highest regard for the President, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and will therefore, not join issues with him. The statement in reference does not even apply to Governor Shettima because while the statement was said to have referred to governors in the North east that have served for eight years in office, Governor Shettima has served for less than three years and it is to the knowledge of everyone that in the case of Borno State, Governor Shettima inherited the Boko Haram crisis in May, 2011.”