Monday, July 18, 2011

Boko Haram: S-East govs task Northern leaders

ENUGU- THE five governors of South East, Sunday, called  on stakeholders in the northern part of the country to tackle  the current wave of insecurity in the region arising from the violent activities of the Islamic sect, Boko Haram just as Minister of Police Affairs has summoned the Inspector-General of Police and the top police hierarchy to a security meeting over Boko Haram.
Gov Kashim Shettima of Borno State has also said that the government will provide the military Joint Task Force, JTF with rules of engagement to discourage soldiers from breaking the rights of the people. The governor had earlier accused the JTF of excesses during their operations to counter Boko Haram uprising.
From left, Gov. Theodore Orji of Abia, Gov. Martin Elechi of Ebonyi, Secretary to Government of the Federation, Sen. Pius Anyim, Gov. Peter Obi of Anambra, Gov. Rochas Okorocha of Imo, Gov. Sullivan Chime of Enugu, Deputy Speaker Federal House of Representatives, Mr. Emeka Ihedioha during South-East Governors and Political Leaders Forum in Enugu on Sunday.Photo by Hill Ezeugwu.
Speaking with British Broadcasting Corporation, BBC Sunday, Governor Shettima expressed opposition to the calls for the withdrawal of soldiers from the streets of Maiduguri, while appealing to the residents who were trooping out of the state not to leave. He also urged Boko Haram to lay down their arms and open up lines of communication, saying the government was ready to meet their reasonable demands.
Meanwhile, human rights activist, Mr Femi Falana has called for the prosecution of immediate past governor of Borno State, Mallam Modu Sheriff for his alleged involvement in the extra-judicial killing of Bako Haram leaders.
Rising from a one-day meeting in Enugu, the Chairman of the South East Governors’ Forum and Governor of Anambra Sate, Mr. Peter Obi urged the  stakeholders in the north to do everything possible to tackle the current security challenges  in the zone.
The governor, who did not give details of their discussion at the meeting, stated that the brief meeting, as usual, deliberated on issues affecting the zone.
“It is a very short meeting and we discussed issues affecting the South East geopolitical Zone. We are committed in working together,” Obi added.
The meeting was attended by governors of Enugu, Anambra, Imo and Ebonyi states. Abia State governor, Theodore Orji was absent at the meeting.
Minister summons IG, top Police hierarchy to security meeting
Following the frightening security situation in the country occasioned by the Boko Haram bombings and attacks in parts of the country, the new Minister of Police Affairs, Navy Captain Caleb Olubolade (rtd) has summoned crucial security meeting with the Inspector General of Police, Hafiz Ringim and the top hierarchy made up of DIG’s and AIG’s at Force Headquarters, Abuja, today.
The meeting, according to Vanguard’s investigation, will deliberate on concrete steps to be put in place by the Police towards checkmating the menace of terrorism and restore confidence in the citizenry. It is also to re-assure the people that the Police is up to the task of tackling the Boko Haram threat.
Vanguard was told that the meeting which is the first since Olubolade assumed office a week ago, will signpost the direction the minister intends to go, especially as Olubolade’s reappointment and deployment from FCTA to the Police ministry underscored President Jonathan’s resolve to tackle police challenges headlong.
It was further learnt that the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Police Affairs, Alhaji Bukar Goni Aji and some critical directors will be in attendance at the meeting which will also find ways of fine-tuning the police operational methods.
The precarious financial situation of the force which is threatening to disrupt Police operations nationwide, will also be discussed Vanguard was told.