Kashim Shettima, the governor of Borno State, reacted on Thursday to the ambush on his campaign convoy by suspected Boko Haram insurgents. Shettima’s campaign convoy came under attack on Tuesday evening while traveling along Maiduguri – Gamboru road. At least, four civilians and a soldier died in the bloody attack after some suspected Boko Haram insurgents dressed as soldiers infiltrated the convoy and suddenly opened fire on them.
The Borno governor returned from his campaign trip to Gamboru last night and was received by a sea of supporters who thronged the Government House in Maiduguri to sympathise with him. In a press statement issued by his spokesman, Isa Gusau, the governor expressed condolence to the families of those who lost their loved ones during the attack. The governor said he would be visiting the bereaved families later on Thursday to empathise with them. Mr Gusau also said three persons lost their lives. The Civillian-JTF sources had told journalists that two other bodies were recovered yesterday, which brought the total death toll to five. However, the governor said he has not been given full security briefing on the attack.
According to the statement: “Governor Kashim Shettima mourns, with the deepest thoughts and heartfelt condolences, the demise of some fellow citizens, brothers, associates and loyal supporters following an unfortunate ambush of some vehicles in his convoy by suspected insurgents on Tuesday evening along the road to Gamboru, headquarters of Ngala local government area. While the Governor is expecting full security briefing to get accurate information on the incident, (a) preliminary report on Wednesday, confirmed the killing of three persons during the attack, which principally aimed to attract local and global media attention in order to sustain propaganda strategy and to instill fear in citizens and gallant troops.
“Governor Shettima, who returned at night yesterday, will today (Thursday), meet families of those affected by the attack. The Governor will also meet some security heads to review the incident and more importantly, to continue his determined collaboration with all security agencies and volunteers in remaining committed to the ongoing fight against Boko Haram. The Governor has absolute confidence in the armed forces and given his access to raw updates, he is aware of the successes being recorded by the armed forces despite Tuesday’s and previous attacks by the insurgents. For one success recorded by the insurgents, the armed forces record dozens against them. The Governor remains optimistic and urges citizens to be calm, prayerful and supportive of the Nigerian armed forces and volunteers through means that include (as they have been doing) the sharing of useful information.
“Tuesday’s incident happened while the Governor was on his way to Gamboru in continuation of campaigns for the Presidential and national assembly elections coming up on Saturday. The Governor had left Maiduguri on Tuesday morning and stopped for campaigns in Mafa and Dikwa local government areas before heading to Gamboru where he passed the night and returned to Maiduguri on Wednesday. He had on Monday traveled to Damasak, headquarters of Mobbar local government area in northern Borno. Before then, he had previously held campaigns in most parts of northern Borno including Monguno where he spent the night. He had also been to all the nine local government areas of southern Borno including Chibok, Gwoza, Askira-Uba, and Biu where he spent days. The Governor extends his deepest gratitude to friends, associates, and other well-meaning Nigerians that have shown concern over the incident.”