I have been cautioned to stop unsolicited defence of the Government in Borno State, which some people perceived as being a facade. I have been challenged to paint a different picture of Governor Babagana Umara Zulum. But mine is born out of a personal conviction, much more than what others want me to believe. So far, I have not seen anything to convince me into changing my position, hence this piece.
Many others like me are being prevailed upon, but no matter what they think, this issue about the Governor collecting N2billion monthly from Mr President and the attendant narrative that follows, to the effect that Governor Babagana Zulum us a facade, is perhaps most uncharitable, false and deceptive.
The visit by President Muhammadu Buhari, to commemorate the World Humanitarian Day, in Borno was a media affair, and his remarks: no matter how one interpreted them, did not convey any disclosures, that the press failed to reflect.
Although I was not personally there, no one gave any contrary news, from what was widely reported: and I trust the news judgement of those who covered the visit.
In their reports, which reflected both the positive and negative side developments, I am not aware of anyone quoting any disclosures about Mr President’s special interventions, either for the Government or for the people, besides the open humanitarian assistance rendered.
Most Nigerians were not therefore impressed with the audio trending in the social media space, about the President saying he has been giving money to Borno State Government, to cater for repentant Boko Haram elements and others.
While those who crafted the piece of obvious mischief, have been busy celebrating and beaming in smiles to their paymasters, that, they have scored a landmark political point, Nigerians are angry, that, the humanitarian efforts of the Government is being unnecessarily drawn into murky political waters.
In attributing their source to the President, who they quoted as having revealed the extra steps he takes to bail the state out of her predicament in a remark at the palace if the Shehu of Borno, they chose to employ Kanuri and Hausa: the two most widely spoken dialects in Borno to convey the mischief.
While efforts are being made to verify the source, the attendant clarification by Mallam Garba Shehu: the President’s official spokesperson, who dismissed the posts as a hoax: a clarification I personally confirmed, from him, suffices that Nigerians should disregard the trending mischief..
Untill somebody called my attention to what they claimed the President said, in response to what the Shehu of Borno also allegedly said, no one heard or quoted any such disclosure from Mr President.
Of course, the world knows, that, this is political era, and so many such mischief are to be expected. Against the superlative performances of Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum; attempting to portray him as a facade, may be a strong political alibi, which may aid the seeming desparate moves to undo him: but they were actually bringing out the best in the man, who the world acclaims as doing his best in the circumstances.
I regard that concoction as perhaps one of the unkindest cuts from a seeming desperate opposition, in the move towards the next election.
In the face of what many others described as the dawn of exceptionally transparent and honest leadership in Borno , the allusion has the tendency to fester fresh dimensions to the struggle for power, in an enclave, ravaged by insurgency.
I feel that, one does not need a clarification from Borno State Governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, nor his managers, to know, that, what has been trending in the Social Media, about money being given every month by President Muhammadu Buhari, for the rehabilitation and upkeep of repentant Boko Haram elements, was a hoax.
Thanks once more for Garba Shehu’s clarifications and the affirmation from others who were at the Shehu’s palace with Mr President, that no such remarks were made during the interface with the Shehu if Borno.