The federal government and its agencies have been accused of being reactive in the fight against the Boko Haram insurgency which is threatening the unity of the country.
This is as fear and anxiety gripped motorists and travellers along the popular Kano-Damaturu-Maiduguri highway Friday evening. The road was abandoned following speculations that the outlawed members of the Boko Haram sect were unleashing terror on people in particular parts of road
A group of women under the auspices of Borno Concerned Women’s Forum yesterday in a press statement signed by Aisha Ali Suleiman, said the present reactive stance of the fedora government towards the Boko Haram insurgency will not achieve much until proactive steps are taken.
They said: “We feel we are duty bound to add our voice to the call on federal government to take proactive measures against the insurgents instead of being reactive after attacks.”
The group also called on members of the National Assembly from Borno State to take actions that will force the federal government contribute to the well being of people of the state and support the efforts of the governor of the state in rehabilitating the victims of Boko Haram insurgency.
The women said they appreciated Governor Kashim Shettima efforts of giving hope and confidence to victims of Boko Haram insurgency by rebuilding their destroyed houses and footing the medical bills of those injured.
They lamented that the recent eruption of violence has dampened the morale of the people and rubbished the peace initiative of government.
The fear which led to abandoning the Kano-Damaturu-Maiduguri highway followed information those commuters on the road were forced to turn back over rumours that insurgents had again blocked the Maiduguri-Beneshiek axis of the road.
A witnessed who was travelling on the road to Maiduguri, said he saw many motorists reverse and speed off to Damaturu in fear when they were told “the road was bad,” an apparent reference to the insecurity around the area.
He said: “We hurriedly reversed and returned to Damaturu, 30 minutes after we passed the town. Those who had gone earlier warned us to reverse that the insurgents are on the road,”
He said he had to joined the other in the forced U-turn as many travellers had vowed not to proceed until security troops clear the road and assure it was safe.
According to Mallam Abdul Kabir “Over 50 vehicles coming from Abuja, Kano, Jigawa and Bauchi had to return to Damaturu. There is speculation that Boko Haram men have returned to the road again and everybody was afraid to pass the road. I have made a U-turn to Damaturu now and there are other commuters and motorists. It is dangerous to proceed and we are staying here tonight”.
It would be recalled that last September, Boko Haram insurgents had stormed Beneshiek, blocking the highway after the nearly military base was attacked.
In the attack no fewer than 100 people, mainly commuters and motorists, were slaughtered on the highway by the insurgents, a development which compelled incessant patrol on the road by military troops.
The State Commissioner of Police, Lawan Tanko could not be reached for confirmation and reaction on the development as at press time.