President Muhammadu Buhari has praised the efforts of outgoing administration of Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno in promoting education as counter strategy to Boko Haram ideology and insurgency.
Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, in a statement, said the president gave the commendation at the inauguration of six model schools built by Borno state government in Maiduguri, on Thursday.
The schools among the 40 world class facilities established to provide quality education to mostly children of the poor, and those turned orphans by the 10-year insurgency in the state.
The President said expansion of educational facilities in the state was the best response to Boko Haram’s actions to stifle education, especially that of the girl child.
“This is a wise response to Boko Haram terrorism. Education plays a significant and remedial role in the efforts to provide equal opportunity and achieve a higher standard of living for citizens,” he said.
President Buhari assured Gov. Shettima and Borno indigenes that his administration is still focused on recovering the abducted Chibok and Dapchi school girls.
He said: “We will not give up. As a President, Nigerian and parent, I share in the agony of parents whose children have been abducted. We will do all that can be done to reunite them with their families.”
According to him, an end is already near for Boko Haram insurgency.
The President commended the outgoing governor for achieving so much in provision of infrastructure, expansion of educational opportunities, especially for the girl-child, improving health facilities and stimulating the manufacturing sector in spite of distractions by Boko Haram.
In his remarks, Shettima said the entire state remained eternally grateful to the President for the succour he brought by providing good and responsive leadership.
“We are grateful for the succour you have brought to our people. Nigeria has never had a leader with as much passion and love for Borno State,” he said.
The governor expressed optimism that the state’s massive investment in education would pay off in due course.
At the event, the Shehu of Borno, Alhaji Abubakar Ibn Umar Garbai extoled President Buhari’s leadership qualities, and his passion for empowering ordinary Nigerians through youth programmes, investments in agriculture, provision of stable power and security.
While condoling with the Armed Forces on loss of officers and men, he promised a regular update by traditional rulers on all security threats.
President Buhari commissioned schools with boarding facilities for about 1,200 students, while 1,000 will be day students.
The schools will provide free education, uniforms, sandals and two meals for students while non-boarding students will get bicycles.
Two of the schools inaugurated by the president were named “Muhammadu Buhari Academy,” and “Yemi Osinbajo Primary School”.
Six of the schools were named after Amb. Babagana Kingibe, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation; Asheik Jarma, a former elected governor of the state; late Alhaji Mala Kachalla, another former civilian governor and a “mega primary school” was named after late Ibrahim Damcida, a distinguished career civil servant.
Also, one of the schools was branded “Aliko Dangote Academy”, in honour of Africa’s richest man for his “enormous contributions” in reconstructing communities in the state after destructions by Boko Haram.
Other projects inaugurated by the President were Borno State Industrial Hub, incorporating 16 integrated manufacturing plants, which produces varied products like plastics, candies, sacks, PVCs, solar power panels, biscuits and cassava powder.
The rest were a state of the art Radio Diagnostic Complex at the State Specialist Hospital, a housing estate named “Zanna Umar Mustapha Gardens’’ which provides 246 3-bedroom houses and the newly completed