A former Governor of Borno State, Senator Kashim Shettima, has said that he is confident that President Muhammadu Buhari gave money to procure weapons for the fight against security challenges facing the country.
Shettima, who is representing Borno Central Senatorial District in the National Assembly, and Chairman, Senate Committee on Interior, also said the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) could address the country’s insecurity in its six years of leadership if the right thing had been done.
The senator who was speaking recently at a webinar organised by Nigerian Muslims Forum in the United Kingdom on “Addressing Challenges of Northern Nigeria”, said: “On insecurity, our party, the APC has been leading Nigeria for the past six years. If we are really serious about ending this insecurity, we can do it.
“We don’t need sophisticated weapons that Turkey bought from Russia or the ones that Saudi Arabia bought from the US, what we need are the basic tools like the helmet, drones and the likes.
“But, I swear to Almighty God, these people don’t have these tools. I am saying this with all sense of responsibility.
“The president is too lenient; he will just appoint someone and not check whether the person does his job as required. I am confident he gave them money thinking they will do the right thing. But we don’t have them on ground now.
“I recently met the new Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Ibrahim Attahiru and from all indications he has the zeal and I am confident we shall soon see the change. But the president must rise to his responsibility,” the Senator added.
On the issue of poverty, the two-term governor said the region must address the problem from its root by investing heavily in education.
“The situation we are in today in the north is not only poverty and insecurity. Because, even if you give people money, how can you fight intergenerational poverty?
“Countries like Chile for instance did not allow their educational system to collapse. And, in Nigeria, Africa and even the world at large, we are no longer in the agricultural or even industrial age. We are in post-industrial knowledge-driven age.
“So, as long as we want to fight poverty in the north, we have to revive our education sector.
“It is sad that our schools have nothing to write home about. We the elites of the region are its problem because we can afford to take our children to study in the US, UK, Dubai and other places and leave the children of the poor to their own destinies; whether they live or they die. So, to tackle this problem, we have to go back to its root and renovate our schools.
“As long as we don’t educate the children of the poor, we will never have the peace we are all yearning for in the north,” he concluded.
Daily Trust reports that the National Security Adviser, retired Major General Babagana Monguno recently accused the immediate service chiefs of diverting funds meant for procuring the arms, though he later said he was quoted out of context.