Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno state has expressed optimism that elections will hold in Borno State despite the ongoing military operations holding in the state as a result of insurgency which has displaced many out of their homelands.
He however, expressed regret that some politicians are trying to use the lingering insecurity in the northeast to rig elections. According to him the idea of having millions of displaced persons to go back to their devastated communities to cast their votes was only a move by some selfish politicians who do not really care about the lives of the people to, to assume power at all cost.
Speaking to newsmen in Gombe, Governor Settima said, over a million and half Nigerians who have been displaced from their communities, their lives have been cut off from their families, and their homes burnt into ashes are currently traumatised and that they need a government that will revive those communities by rebuilding their infrastructures, water, schools and bring the people back their normal lives.
Shettima who said he believes there would be a hitch free elections in Borno State in the forth coming general elections, also expressed that, as a result of the gallant effort of the Nigerian Army and its counterparts from Chad, Niger, Mali, and Cameroon who are currently fighting to end terrorism in the region, Maiduguri the state capital of Borno State has now become more peaceful than some states in the federation, and that a lot of the displaced persons are likely to cast their votes within the state capital.
“Our communities are devastated, our people are traumatised, over a million and half of Nigerians have been displaces from their homelands, and here some clowns are trying to rig the elections at whatever cost. Those people who want to force our people back to their devastated communities have settled in Abuja with their cats, and dogs, and families, and if it was possible for them to uproot, they would uproot all their monument of madness, and their so called huge homes and relocate them to Abuja, and they have the audacity to insult the people of Borno, all they are agitating for is actually an avenue for them to rig elections but we won’t allow it to happen.” he expressed.
According to him, as Nigeria is gearing towards the forth coming elections, it is most importantly paramount for all Nigerians to work towards ensuring a hitch free elections against all individual interests as the country is greater than any individual.
He further explained that, the current security situations in especially the southern parts of Borno including Gwoza, Chibok, Dambuwa, Hawul, and Kaga have become precarious because the ongoing military operations in the state have successfully pursued the insurgents in to a smaller geographical area within the Sambisa forested which is closer to those communities. Adding that most of the activities of the insurgents are mostly ‘ hit and run’ attacks because of the current military operations in the state.
He expressed commitment of his administration if elected for the second term, to bring back the state to live. He said, the state has the largest land mass in the whole federation which he described as three times larger than the entire southern region, and that, his administration will use the land resources to revitalise the agricultural sector in the state. According to him, the Chad basin situated in the state has about 67,000 hectares of land out of which only 10,000 hectares were used. Even as he said, government will also invest in other sectors especially education, health, youth and women empowerment.