North East elders lament resurgence of terrorism, task FG on security, unemployment
Borno and Yobe States Elders Forum (BYSEF) at the weekend tasked the Federal Government and National Assembly on the need to tackle the ‘resurgence of terrorism’ in the North East.
The decade long Boko Haram insurgency has claimed thousands of lives and property worth billions of Naira. This year alone, Boko Haram and Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) terrorists have attacked dozens of communities in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.
The elders’ forum led by Ibrahim Bunu gave the charge during a visit to Borno State Governor Babagana Zulum at Government House, Maiduguri.
While lamenting the resurgence of terrorism, Bunu said, “We’ve traveled from Abuja to Maiduguri to sympathise and condole you and victims on the resurgence of Boko Haram insurgency in Borno and Yobe.
“We’ve seen your zeal and commitment towards ending this war that has claimed many lives and property, including our members’ relations and their property,” noting that the elders’ visit was to console the Governor and the state.
Zulum, who described the elders as dignified indigenes, said the fundamental challenge in the two states remained the insecurity of lives and property.
He noted that last Monday’s fasting and prayers had started to yield positive results with the routing of more terrorists from the Lake Chad region and Sambisa Forest.
He told the elders that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the construction of 10,000 houses for returning displaced in the state, adding that the challenges currently facing the state include rising displacement of people, means of livelihoods and unemployment among the youths.
Speaking on unemployment, he said, “Terrorism has increased the rate of unemployment to 100, 000 in Monguno Council, while it is estimated at 50, 000 at Nganzai Council,” warning that if jobs were not created, the government may not terrorists’ activities.
He pointed out that the receding of Lake Chad by 90 per cent, could also exacerbate the rate of unemployment and poverty in Borno and Yobe states, noting, “To overcome the threat to lives and property, we should promote good governance and unity among various ethnic and religious groups.
“We should promote various economic activities in agricultural and livestock sectors, as the Lake Chad Basin is full of untapped agricultural and mineral resources.”
He, therefore, urged the National Assembly and Elders’ Forum to brainstorm and engage the youths in productive and added value economic activities in Lake Chad Basin Areas.
Zulum targeted the agricultural, livestock and aquaculture sectors in overcoming challenges of unemployment and poverty in the two states.
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