Attack on oil exploration team tragic setback – Borno Governor

Rebecca Muazu, Abuja

The Borno State Government says the attack on the geologists, oil exploration workers from the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the staff of the University of Maiduguri by boko haram, is a tragic setback in efforts to boost Nigeria’s economic fortunes. 

Governor Kashim Shettima said in a statement, that after hearing reports about the attack on his way to visit the President in London, he had been in shock and in deep pain.

The governor however said it was necessary to commend the Nigerian military for re-mobilizing and countering the initial gains of the insurgents.

“On behalf of Government and people of Borno State, I mourn and salute the soldiers and our sons in the Civilian JTF who paid the supreme price by giving their lives in this fight.

“I haven’t been myself normal self since I received information on that attack. What happened in the first instance was a tragic setback in the fight against Boko Haram and in Nigeria’s effort to expand its economic fortunes,” he said.

Governor Shettima said pending the report the Borno State Government had never lost focus in doing whatever was within its powers in supporting the Nigerian Armed Forces, in funding and equipping the Civil JTF and other volunteers, in mobilizing and passing on intelligence generated from communities and in regularly briefing all those concerned with the fight against boko haram.

It said the governor had in all meetings with Presidency officials, President Muhammadu Buhari and the Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, they had jointly and individually shown tremendous political will to the war against terror.

He assured the people of Borno state and other Nigerians that they were not resting on their oars, but were devotedly committed to the fight.

Governor Shettima said he believed that by the power and grace of God, the battle against boko haram would be completed soon, while urging the military, volunteers in the Civilian JTF, vigilantes and hunters to consider what had happened as a temporary setback that should strengthen the will and collective determination to defeat the forces of evil.

I am confident that Boko Haram will become history, by the will of the Nigerian Armed Forces through the supreme help of God” Shettima was quoted as saying in the statement.