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Boko Haram menace over – Senator Ndume

The senator representing Borno South Senatorial District, Ali Ndume, said the menace of Boko Haram in the North East has come and gone, and the zone should not be stigmatised over the insecurity of the past.

He stated this on Wednesday while shedding light on his earlier motion on the need to upgrade the Maiduguri airport to an international airport by the Federal Government.

In calling for the upgrade of Maiduguri airport, the lawmaker said some people will express concerns over security as a result of Boko Haram, but he averred that security has greatly improved in the North East compared to other zones across the country.

He noted that Maiduguri is strategic for lifting passengers who embark on international flights.

Reacting to questions, Ndume said: “If we have an airport in Maiduguri, that will solve problems associated with passengers embarking on international flights without even going to Lagos.

“The issue of Boko Haram has come and gone, and well, we thank God that these things are not happening elsewhere. I don’t want a situation where we will use this Boko haram as a stigma.

“This is how others started talking about the Haram issue in Maiduguri. Supposing now that you are from South West and terrorists are everywhere and they bring down a plane, or what they call unknown gunmen in the South East, will you now say it is not safe to have an international airport [there]?

“If it happened at the airport, would you say what guarantee do you have over security? Now, the Boko Haram issue is lesser compared to the bandits we have in North West and is lesser than the problem we have with unknown gunmen, IPOB, and cultists in the South East. It’s lesser than kidnapping that is happening in your zone.

“All flights that go to the Middle East or North Africa, like Egypt, Ethiopia, and others, pass through Maiduguri every day, and we only hear the noise, but we don’t see them touching ground.

“All we are saying is that there are a lot of passengers in Maiduguri. We want to see them stopover because any international flight that takes off from Abuja or Kano will definitely see passengers from Borno or other North East states like Bauchi, Taraba, Adamawa, and Gombe.”