As terrorism and other forms of violent conflict rage on across parts of Africa, the Borno State government has implored the Federal Government to assist in replacing infrastructures worth $5bn destroyed by the Boko Haram insurgents since the start of their deadly campaign in the North-East.
The Board Chairman, Borno State Security Trust Fund, Ambassador Mustapha Aliyu, who made the appeal on Tuesday, noted that
“public and private infrastructures destroyed by the insurgency in the North-East was estimated to be worth about $6bn, and Borno State bore about 70 per cent of the destruction worth about $5bn.”
Aliyu, who said this while receiving a visiting team from the National Institute of Security Studies, added that “We will appeal to the Federal Government to assist in the reconstruction of these infrastructures.”
He also appealed to the Federal Government to tighten security across borders with neighbouring Cameroon, Chad and Niger Republic to curtail the influx of small arms and light weapons into the state.
Borno State, which shares borders with the three Francophone nations, has borne the brunt of the Boko Haram insurgency, which has tormented the North-East since 2001.
Aliyu decried “the porosity of the Nigerian borders, which facilitates movement of small arms and light weapons as well as other dangerous equipment.”
He, however, added that “One of the huge opportunities we have been able to attain is the management of surrendered Boko Haram and ISWAP members, which presents an opportunity to understand the perspectives of weapons and ammunition existing in conflict areas.”
Aliyu said the opportunity afforded the trust fund and the Borno State government a further opportunity to integrate the repentant insurgents into national conversations on a strengthened system of management of small arms and light weapons.
Earlier, the team leader and Deputy Commandant of the National Institute for Security Studies, Dedacus Egbeji, said the Syndicate 3 of Course 16 participants of the institute were in Borno to interact with key agencies of the state government on globalisation, implication for regional integration and sustainable development in Africa.