By Baba Kura Mallam, Maiduguri
Borno State Governor, Alhaji Kashim Shettima of Borno has urged security agents no to treat persons found to have links with the Boko Haram insurgents with kids gloves.
Shetima stated that even if they were his ‘three biological children, security agents should be free to act.
In a state-wide Radio and Television broadcast to the people of the state, Shettima said those jeopardizing the security of the state and the country at large, must be handled in accordance with the law to serve as deterrent to others.
The governor addressed the people of the state in reaction to media reports about the arrest of some highly placed persons in the state suspected to have links with the insurgents.
“I know that insurgents and their allies often hide their identity so well that good citizens may innocently associate with them.
“This is why I strongly say to security agencies that anyone ‘factually’ suspected of despicable links with Boko Haram and other criminals, should face justice, even if that person happens to be one of my three biological children,” he said.
He also urged residents of the state to be more vigilant in the wake of reoccurring suicide bombing by the insurgents.
“In recent days and weeks, we have come under renewed attacks which horribly remind us that our security challenges are still longing.
“It is regrettable that this upsurge in cowardly suicide attacks came not long after the patriotic military forces of this country recaptured Sambisa Forest, which used to be the operational zone of the Boko Haram terrorists.
“Our gallant military and other security agencies have now denied them the use of their former high command. However, we must remind ourselves that the recapture of Sambisa Forest and the flushing out of the terrorists from most of their former enclaves, does not mean that our struggle is over,” Shettima said.
He therefore urged people of the state not to despair but rise to the challenge of fighting the insurgents for peace to return to the state, just as he paid glowing tribute to some parents who made enormous sacrifices.
“I have met parents who exposed their insurgent biological children and handed them over to security forces to face justice. I have met parents who encouraged their children to join the Civilian JTF and risk their lives to fight the insurgents.
“I have even met parents who remained contented and proud even after their sons died fighting under the Civilian JTF.
“We must re-mobilise ourselves and step up vigilance and community policing around all our population and community centres like mosques, churches, markets, schools, hospitals, shopping complexes, football fields, social gatherings and motor parks.
“We must watch out for strange and suspicious faces, not for the purpose of taking the law into our hands’ but for reporting these suspicious persons to the nearest security agents for prompt action,” he said.
‘Don’t spare Boko-Haram supporters, even if they are my children’- says Shettima
By Baba Kura Mallam, Maiduguri