Governor Babagana Umara Zulum has felicitated with Christians in Borno State and across the country at ongoing Christmas celebrations.
Zulum’s message was contained in a statement issued on Monday morning by his spokesman, Malam Isa Gusau.
Below is Governor Zulum’s message as he was quoted in the statement:
“I will like to felicitate with our Christian brothers and sisters in Borno State at the Christmas celebration. I will like us to also remember our history and how we have been tested by the challenges that confronted our state, especially since 2009. The security challenges we faced affected us as citizens, regardless of our faith. Boko Haram insurgents attacked dozens of mosques and churches as well as communities, killing Muslims and Christians at various times. They rendered many of our brothers and sisters homeless across the north, south and central parts of Borno State.”
“As Governor, I have, on numerous occasions, paid humanitarian and reconstruction visits to diverse communities of all faiths in the south, north and central because the attacks by insurgents mostly did not take religion into account. Everyone who did not share the Boko Haram ideology was a target, regardless of whether the victim was Muslim or Christian.”
“I have paid countless visits to communities in Chibok, Askira-Uba, Hawul, Biu, Gwoza, Monguno, Baga, Kala-Balge to mention but a few and at all times, my consideration has always been about critical humanitarian needs and not religion.”
“We have worked hard to rebuild and resettle communities with the consideration of fairness to the most affected portions of our 27 local government areas.”
“While majority of citizens seem to appreciate all that we are achieving together, there are few amongst us, who in recent times are trying to undermine our core values and the religious tolerance that exist across Borno State.
These few persons appear to ignore the truth that in Borno State there are many families with mixture of Muslim and Christian members, sometimes from same parents, yet living together in harmony.
“These few persons seem to forget our experiences and how we have tried to resist aggressors who wanted to tear us along religious lines.
“We must resist any attempt to divide us along religious lines, especially now that Borno is on the part of economic recovery, growth and development.”
“As Governor of Borno State, I pledge not to be distracted and I pledge to remain fair with the guiding principle of considering the urgency of humanitarian needs as they affect communities in all our continued responses across Borno State”.