Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to explore other options than use of force to tackle the Boko Haram menace ravaging the Northeast.
He made the suggestion as he met with Buhari in the Presidential Villa, Abuja to discuss the security challenges, especially after over 40 persons were killed in the latest attack by the insurgency a day earlier.
Speaking with the press after the meeting with the President, the governor said the repentant insurgents who were forced into Boko Haram membership, should be integrated into the society.
Zulum said: “I am basically here to discuss with Mr. President on how possible the Federal Government can strengthen the current security situation on ground as well as strengthen the means of livelihood to the entire people of Borno state.
“Basically, we want to address the root causes of insurgency, especially the issue of access roads, access to farm lands and the issue of strengthening civilian JTF and the military to do their jobs better than before.
“You are aware that some incidents occurred two three days ago where about 40 people were killed in Konduga. By and large, we are aware of steps the president is willing to take that will virtually bring that issue to a standstill.
“But most importantly there is need for the federal government to also open other opportunities of bringing down the crisis rather than the kinetic force. It is also important for those people who have been forced to join the insurgency, if they are integrated into the society, I think this will be good.
“There is an existing policy within the military called ‘Operation Safe Corridor’ just to strengthen the system. By and large, we are optimism that Borno state will bounce back again.”
He added that “the issue of security is not one you discuss anyhow. But the government of the state is collaborating with the military and other security agencies to ensure that the citizens are are well protected.
“On my part, I am also trying to strengthen the locals to be resilient enough, especially by providing them with logistics like vehicles and others so that they can undertake some surveillance to support the military.
“By and large, our discussions with the military have gone well and we are doing everything possible to ensure that stability returns to Borno state.”