Borno State Governor Kashim Shettima has expressed doubts over the reported declaration of Gwoza as a territory of the Islamic sect, Boko Haram.
He expressed doubts over the authenticity of the video where the sect leader Abubakar Shekau made the claim, but stated that the government was the activities of the security agencies fighting insurgency in the state.
“I cannot comment on the authenticity or otherwise of that video in question, I will leave that to security experts. I also cannot disclose measures being adopted by security agencies on whatever development in Gwoza or any part of Borno State but I can assure the good people of Borno State and other members of the public that the State Government is actively in touch and supporting security agencies deployed to Borno State in the counter insurgency efforts and insha Allah, the combined efforts will not be in vain.
“We are not just studying the situation with collaborative tact and urgency but indeed, appropriate measures are being taken by the right authorities. For now, I urge the good people of Borno State to remain calm and resolute in their support for security agencies, abiding faith and prayers.
“The security agencies, I am sure, are in the position to analyse the content of the said new video, compare with the facts on ground in Gwoza and brief the Nigerian public as they deem professionally appropriate, bearing in mind the National interest and patriotism as well as the overall safety of citizens.
“Let me use this opportunity to, while thanking members of the Nigerian and International media for their firm support for Borno people and its government since this insurgency crisis in 2009, make a strong appeal that we do not dramatise and sensationalise issues such as the one connected with Gwoza, so that we all do not fall for the objective of insurgents, which is to at all times, claim victory over our sovereign State, our rights to existence, our freedom and our liberty, as it is always their goal to create so much panic that would make anyone who doesn’t share their ideology feel unsafe and defeated.
“Even as those of us in the media work tirelessly to disseminate information in the discharge of important duties that aim to protect the fundamental rights of the public to know happenings within and around them, we must at this moment, more than ever before, do our jobs with patriotic support for our country and its security forces as well as our passion for humanity as against those that seek to send humanity into extinction. As disturbing as what is said to be the development is, I remain very optimistic that victory will never go the way of those that violently stand between fellow human beings and their divine rights to exist as God’s creatures on earth,” he said.