President Muhammadu Buhari has said the armed forces would increase their engagements and counter-attacks on Boko Haram elements who are currently fleeing from the Chad Basin region.
President Buhari gave the commitment on Thursday when he received in audience the Borno State governor, Professor Babagana Zulum, who visited him at the State House, to update him on the security situation in the state.
Zulum, who disclosed the outcome of his meeting with the President to journalists after the meeting, said he informed him of the southwards movement of the terrorist elements, who had suffered heavy blows from the military forces of Chad Republic in recent times.
According to him, President Buhari had vowed to give the needed support to the Nigerian Armed Forces to complete the decimation of the fleeing terrorists and ensure that they are unable to blend into communities in the area or find their way back to the Sambisa Reserve.
He said the state was already in a panic mode, seeing the fleeing terrorists had already starting finding their way back into different parts of the state, saying “honestly speaking, we are apprehensive because of the ongoing operations by the Chadians.
“Right now most of the Boko Haram are fleeing the shores of Lake Chad, areas of Chad Republic and they are now coming into northern and southern Borno State. There’s need for us to now provide some counter-insurgency attacks”, he said.
However, when asked what President Buhari’s response to the situation was, the governor said “that this is the right time that the government of Nigeria, under his leadership, will do everything possible to support the JTF and others to be proactive enough to contain the situation, to deal with them decisively, with the view to ending the crisis, so that they shouldn’t occupy some other areas in the northern state, as well as in the Sambisa Reserve”.
When asked about the level of preparedness of his administration to combat an outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) disease in the state, particularly because of the nature of the humanitarian crisis the state had been managing over the years, he said appropriate steps were being taken.
According to him, though the state is yet to record even one case of the COVID-19, the administration had already placed restrictions on movements, adding that the state already stopped return of indigenes of the state who are living abroad, in the meantime.
“My deputy governor, who is the chairman of the Coronavirus Pandemic Committee, is doing very well. We have stopped vehicular movements into Maiduguri.
“We have stopped our indigenes coming from abroad from coming and if they must come, we are taking them straight to the isolation centres. We have huge numbers of IDP camps and we have taken some measures, including frequent checking”, he said.
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