Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum has said that internally displaced persons (IDPs) are being recruited by Boko Haram insurgents.
In an interview with the Hausa Service of BBC, Governor Zulum noted that his government has been able to return displaced persons to Mafa and Kukawa, while plans were on to return people to Kawuri. He added that the IDPs are tired and bored of staying in the camps because they were not getting what they really wanted.
“Truly, the Boko Haram sect is working on people to join them. This is frightening. If the IDPs living in camps could not get what they are looking for, especially the opportunity to go back to their various towns and return to farm, they may be forced to join the Boko Haram sect.
“It is important that they go back to their various towns because no government can continue to be feeding them continuously.
“The sect members are hiding at the Lake Chad area and the Sambisa forest. There will still be problems unless they are traced to their hiding places. Chasing them away from their headquarters is one of the solutions towards ending insurgency.”
On if insurgents still occupy some places in Nigeria, Governor Zulum said;
“Truly, there is no place under the occupation of Boko Haram. But there are places with no people there. What I mean is that people are yet to return to their places of origin.”
“I swear by Allah, before the coming of Buhari, the security situation in Borno had deteriorated. At that time, 20 local government areas were under Boko Haram. Now, it’s not so.”
The Borno state Governor who revealed that the military are doing their best in the fight against insurgency, added;
“One surest way to end Boko Haram is ensuring a good relationship between the military and civilians.
“I keep on saying wherever you go; you will see the military and vigilante together. But what I am saying is that the military should provide protection to the civilians to enable them return home and go back to their farms.
“But what is disturbing us is, when shall this war with Boko Haram come to an end?”
Recounting the attack he and his convoy got into in Baga, the Governor described it as shameful and further maintained that whatever is done to hinder the fight against Boko Haram is an act of sabotage, including failure to use money and buy arms.
“I was not afraid because I rely on Allah. Nothing will happen to a Muslim unless by the will of Almighty Allah.
“I was attacked with bombs but Almighty Allah protected me. We must be brave; if we continue to fear, the war will not end.”