Following recent attacks by Boko Haram insurgents in some parts of Borno State, Governor Kashim Shettima, on Tuesday, held a meeting with the youth volunteers assisting the Nigerian security forces in the war against insurgency popularly known as “Civilian JTF”, during which he appreciated their gallant efforts and unveiled welfare packages for them.
The meeting held at the Multi-purpose hall of the Government House, Maiduguri.
The governor held closed door discussions with leaders of the volunteer group focusing on enhancing community policing.
Speaking during the open session with majority of the Civilian JTF, Governor Shettima paid glowing tributes to them for sacrificing their lives towards complementing the efforts of the armed forces towards restoring peace in the state.
Shettima stressed that no amount of welfare package can equal the sacrifices being made by the volunteers especially given the fact that some of them had paid the supreme sacrifice for the state.
He pointed out that despite its meagre resources, the Borno state Government would expend whatever it takes to ensure that the volunteers were properly paid, equipped and highly motivated.
Towards this end, Shettima announced a bonus of N20 million to the volunteers while directing that any backlog of allowances be paid immediately.
The governor also directed the State Ministry of Health to put a system in place that would ensure that all members of the Civilian JTF receive free medical attention in all public hospitals in the state.
He also ordered the supply of more patrol vehicles to the volunteers.
“We are all eternally indebted to you and we thank you most sincerely for the sacrifices you have made for us to have peace in this part of the world. I want to assure you that once the dust settles down, once this madness is over, we have the herculean task of creating jobs, of engaging the multitude of youths who stood firm and ensure that we have peace in this part of the world”, Mr. Shettima said.
The governor also commended the current administration’s effort against Boko Haram, which it said has recorded great successes.
“I have to pay a special tribute to President Muhammadu Buhari, he has shown the zeal, the courage, the passion and the commitment to bring about peace in this part of the world. Our military men and women are now adequately armed and supported so that they carry out their task, they have so far recorded great successes not withstanding some attacks being carried out by insurgents on soft targets. Insha Allah, Boko Haram will be over and very soon”, he noted.
Earlier, leader of the civilian JTF, Baba Lawan Jaafar, pledged the continued commitment of his members to supporting the military in the fight against insurgency in Borno State, saying they were motivated by Governor Shettima’s support for them over the years.
He also used the opportunity to commiserate with the governor over last Sunday’s attack on Ali Dawari town located on the outskirt of Maiduguri, where many lives were lost.
“We have also changed our tactics and strategies. By the grace of God, we are going to resist their new tactics of inflicting havoc”, Mr. Jaafar promised.