© 2019 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Boko Haram Will Be Child’s Play If … Gov Shettima
By Musdapha Ilo, Maiduguri
Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno has warned that although the war against Boko Haram is being won, there may be the emergence of a worse situation if attention is not paid to the root cause of the insurgency.
The governor was speaking on Thursday in the state capital, Maiduguri, when the United Nations resident coordinator in Nigeria, Fatima Samoura, visited his office.
According to Shettima, unless poverty, which is rife in the north and particularly in the North east, is tackled, the insurgency Nigeria battles now may be child play.
“Boko Haram may be an appetizer for worse things to come unless we put our thinking caps on,” the governor said.
“The signals are there all over, the North is going to be inhabited by over 70 percent of Nigeria in 2050 when the nation’s population is expected to be the third largest in the world with over 400 million people.
“There has to be conceited effort from the rest of the world to handle the disaster waiting to happen,” he noted.
Announcing the readiness of the World Bank to give a facility of $800 million to the rehabilitation of the states affected by the insurgency, Samoura lamented that the refugee crisis in Syria has shifted the attention of the world from what is happening in Nigeria.
She, however, assured that more agencies under the UN are willing to assist Borno State to recover from the devastation of Boko Haram.
“We have decided to upgrade our support to this state. For Maiduguri we will be strengthening our presence. We are going to put in place machinery to respond to your need as at when needed.
“We are preparing contingency plans to manage situation of epidemic that may greet the forthcoming raining season,” Samoura said.
Shettima bemoaned the sum the World Bank is giving, which he said was small compared with what other countries facing similar problems get. He also argued that the level of damage suffered by the state is more than the other states put together and thus Borno State should get more attention.
“It is disgusting and unfair to place us on the same platform and level of need with other states affected by the insurgency,” he said.