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Collusion With Boko Haram: Buhari’s Words on Borno Residents Misrepresented – Garba Shehu

Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, has denied President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), ever accused the residents of Borno State of colluding with Boko Haram.

Shehu said this on NTA’s ‘Good Morning Nigeria’ programme on Monday.

Buhari had at a sympathy visit to Maiduguri last week stated, “Boko Haram or whatever they are cannot come to Maiduguri or its environs without the local leadership knowing, the local leadership is in charge of security in their own respective areas.

“We are working for you in this country; as Commander-in-Chief, I am dealing with the security institutions and I believe there is an improvement in security. I urge the people of the state to cooperate with the law enforcement agencies; let us deny Boko Haram access to our loyal citizens and encourage displaced people to go back to their land.”

But Shehu said the President’s words were misrepresented, adding that he also received a backlash of social media because of the comment.

The President’s spokesman said, “I am happy that Isa (Gusau) raised the issue. When the President left Maiduguri, he stressed the need for more intelligence and more support for security and we received a backlash on social media that the President had raised questions about the commitment of the people of Borno in the war against insurgency.

“Never would the President have said such a thing. But as I just said, quality intelligence is a conditio sine qua non for the success of any war.”

The Special Adviser to the Borno State Governor on Public Relations and Strategy, Isa Gusau, who was also on the same programme with Shehu faulted the allegations by the President that Boko Haram was succeeding due to the collaboration of residents.

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