Insecurity: Group Knocks Zulum Over Attempt To Blackmail Troops

The Coalition of Friends and Supporters of Buhari, on Thursday knocked Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum over what it described as the governor’s several “attempts to blackmail,” Nigerian troops fighting the Boko Haram insurgents in the North East.

The group said Zulum, had on two instances, tried to ridicule the Nigerian military, but, however claimed that the governor was wrong on his assumptions.

Recall that Zulum’s convoy was on July 29th attacked by suspected Boko Haram terrorists while on a trip to Monguno and Baga towns to distribute food to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

He had subsequently accused the military of sabotage in the attack on his convoy.

While addressing journalists in Monguno after the incident, Zulum said: “As far as I am concerned, what happened in Baga is a complete sabotage by the military. There is no Boko Haram in Baga.

“I wonder, we have over 1181 soldiers in Baga, 72 officers; 400 soldiers in Mile 4 and 1900 soldiers in Monguno. I see no reason why only five Boko Haram men will stop them from occupying Baga town”.

Zulum, had also in January come down hard on soldiers manning Damaturu-Maiduguri road in the state, over alleged case of extortion at a checkpoint.

But Director of Media of the coalition, Audu Atumeyi, who stated this in a statement, said the group recalled another recent instance where the governor had accused the military of abandoning their posts at Auno, where travellers were killed, only for him to find out that the military had not abandoned the travellers to their fate, but had only gone on another operation when the incident happened.

According to Atumeyi, Zulum’s aides were also following his footsteps to “demonize” the troops with disparaging comments, a development he described as “very uncharitable.”

He called on the governor, to rather than the allegations, collaborate with the military to find solutions to the problem of terrorism ravaging the state.

The governors of the North East, had last Saturday, called on President Muhammadu Buhari to properly arm the Nigeria Police Force to compliment the efforts of the military in the war against Boko Haram terrorists.

They stated this during their second subregional meeting in the Borno State capital, Maiduguri.

The governors, comprising those of Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba and Yobe states, in their 10-point communique after the meeting, praised the federal government’s fight against the Boko Haram terrorism

The forum however, called on the armed forces to “intensify effort to secure hard-to-reach areas in the region and ensure safe access to farmlands.”

Also, it “called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to ensure the deployment of state of the art military hardware to the region.”

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