……As Defence Ministers led service chiefs to Maiduguri for security assessment tour.
By Our Correspondent
Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno state has revealed that the ongoing sustainable onslaught by the military in the fight against Terrorists has led to the voluntary surrender of over 160,000 Boko Haram terrorists in the North East of Nigeria.
Zulum disclosed this when the Minister of Defence, Mohammed Badaru and his counterpart of State, Alhaji Bello Matawalle led the Chief of Defence Staff, General Christopher Musa and other Service Chiefs on a courtesy call at the Government House, Maiduguri.
The Governor said, the visit by high level delegation from the Defence Ministry goes to show the commitment of President Bola Tinubu’s resolve to end insecurity and bring about lasting peace in the region and the country as a whole, inline with the ‘Renewed Hope Agenda’.
“Generally, the security situation in Borno state have improved significantly, but information dessimination is very key in how we report issues related to insurgency. I have observed that some recent reports on renewed attacks by terrorists are far from the truth.
“Within the last two weeks, I have gone round some nooks and crannies of the state, and reports reaching me from traditional rulers, is that peace have returned back to Borno state, and therefore, I have to commend President Bola Tinubu, the ministers of Defence and the Service Chiefs for a job well done.
“Notwithstanding, we are still soliciting for more support, synergy and courage from our security forces to take the fight to the main enclaves of Boko Haram/ISWAP in Sambisa Forests, Shores of Lake Chad and Mandara Mountains. This is very important.
“We really appreciate your support, especially with the non-kinetic approach, which have led to the surrender of over 160,000 Boko Haram terrorists and their families. This feat couldn’t have achieved without the support from the Nigerian Military and other stakeholders. And as responsible government, we will continue to give our maximum support and work towards these direction.
“As you are aware, Borno state is sharing porous borders with three African Countries of Niger, Cameroun and Chad, and so, without proper onslaught, proliferation of small arms which is a big issue will never be curtailed from this part of the country.
“The shores of the Lake Chad is very important for arable farming, it has about 25,000 square metres, and because of the receding of Water in the Lake Chad, there is the need to put hands together to allow people have access and freedom to these arable farmlands to key into the federal government’s initiative on Wheat Production, livestock farming and income generation.” Zulum stated.
Earlier while addressing the Governor and members of his cabinet, the Defence Minister, Alhaji Badaru who was the former governor of Jigawa state, commend Zulum for his support, particularly on the area of operational vehicles and equipments, which have assisted troops in defeating insurgents in the region.
He told the gathering that before the Courtesy Call, his team met with governor Zulum where they had a fruitful discussions on the way forward.
Badaru assured that the military and other security agencies have been strategized with support from President Tinubu, adding that very soon the war against Boko Haram/ISWAP, Banditry and other criminal activities would come to an end.
The Minister also commended troops in the Frontline for taking the bullets, in order to bring lasting peace across the country.
He also used the opportunity to say that, the team will visit the Theatre Command of Operation Hadin Kai under the leadership of Major General Gold Chibuisi to interact with troops including the wounded ones so as to hear from them if there are any challenges that need immediate solutions.
Amongst the delegation of the Minister include that of State (Defence), Bello Matawalle, Chief of Defence Staff, General Christopher Musa, the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Taojeed Lagbaja, Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Hassan Abubakar, Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Emmanuel Ogalla, Chief of Defence Intelligence, Major General Emmanuel Undiandeye, the Theatre Commander, North East ‘Operation Hadin Kai’, Major General Gold Chibuisi, and some heads of other paramilitary apparatus.