August 13, 2020

Baga: Do not speak ill of our troops, Pro-Buhari group advises Gov Zulum, aides


Nigerian soldiers

Nigerian soldiers

The Coalition of Friends and Supporters of Buhari (CFSB) has warned Governor of Borno State, Babagana Zulum and his aides over any attempt to sabotage President Muhammadu Buhari’s insurgency war with their campaign of calumny against the military.

According to the pro-Buhari group,  Nigerians would reject any move to blackmail or ridicule the military and the president’s insurgency war.

CFSB made this disclosure in a statement signed by its Director of Media, Audu Atumeyi, on Thursday.

The group said it is gradually becoming a pattern for Zulum to accuse the military of wrongdoing without the necessary facts and evidence to back it up.

Recall that Zulum had pointed accusing finger at the military, saying that attack on convoy was complete sabotage.

His words: “As far as I am concern, what happened in Baga is complete sabotage by the military. There is no Boko Haram in Baga. “I wondered, we have over 1181 soldiers in Baga, 72 officers, 107 soldiers, 400 soldiers in mile 4 and 1900 soldiers in Monguno, I see no reason why only 5 Boko Haram will stop them from occupying Baga town.

“The troops have been in mile 4 for over one year, there is complete sabotage, the problem is not with President Buhari or General Buratai, but the command and control structure is nothing to write home about.

“There is a need to look into the command structure.  We have over 80,000 IDPs in Monguno, they cannot continue to depend on International Non Governmental Organizations (INGO) and others for food, we have to create opportunity for them to go back to their communities and continue with their business and farming activities, after Sallah, we are going to allow people to go back to kukawa and we will give time to the military, if they will not clear Baga, we will mobilize our hunters, CJTF, and Vigilantes to recapture Baga, we cannot continue like this, people have to take their destiny in their hands.”

READ ALSO: Zulum points accusing finger at military, says attack on convoy complete sabotage

Reacting Audu Atumeyi denied his latest claim that troops engage in fishing business in Borno, describing it as untrue.

“The allegation about troops engaging in fishing business is totally untrue as no military top commander control their postings and therefore cannot afford the luxury of investing in ventures like fishing when they know not when they’ll be removed from such stations,” Atumeyi said.

“Secondly, only a foolish officer would abandon the task of fighting Boko Haram with all the inherent danger, and engage in buying and selling when he knows that going by the callousness of the Boko Haram members and their desperation to hit at Nigerian troops, they could spring surprises at any time if guards are lowered.

“Thirdly, most of the officers and military men posted to these stations are from other battalions whose knowledge of the fishing terrain are technical but not to the extent of taking over the businesses of residents and indigenes.

“There are, for instance, said to be about 200 permanent and semi-permanent fishing communities in Baga town and over 40,000 fishermen on the Nigerian side of the Lake Chad which is shared by Nigeria, Chad, Niger Republic and Cameroon.

“How the military can take over the business of dealing in not less than seven fish species with over 40,000 participating interests who have been involved in it for years remains a puzzle.”

The group added political elites in Borno should be held responsible for the continued activities of Boko Haram in the state.

According to CFSB, neighbouring governors and politicians have shown more will to end terrorists’ activities in their domains.

“That Boko Haram activities have lingered only in Borno State while it has abated in other states should serve as the worst point of curiosity,” the statement added.

“The simple answer is that while states like Yobe, Adamawa, Gombe and Bauchi have been serious about ending the insurgency the political leaders and elites in Borno State are not sincere.

“The truth is that many politicians from Borno State do not want the insurgency to end because they are making money as the terrorist activities linger and it serves their political interests to sustain their nefarious activities.

The group, however, called on “other well-meaning Nigerians to totally, reject the attempts by the Borno State Government to ridicule the military.”

It further called on the “Borno State Governor to stop all allegations and collaborate with the military to find solutions to the problem of terrorism ravaging his state.”