The Department of State Services (DSS) has asked governors of the zone to prioritise the distribution of relief materials to strengthen security gains in the insurgency-ravaged area.
This was part of the resolution of the communiqué at the end of the quarterly conference of DSS directors across the six states in the North East geopolitical zone held at the state headquarters of the secret police in Maiduguri.
The DSS directors in the zone had gathered in Maiduguri to discuss the zone’s security and the role of intelligence gathering in the fight against terrorism.
The directors led by their chairman, Abdullahi Hussani, visited Borno State governor, Babagana Zulum, at the end of the meeting and presented their communiqué of their deliberations.
Zulum who is the chairman of the North-East Governors’ Forum, thanked the directors and promised to work with his colleagues to restore peace in the troubled zone.
He also promised to follow up with the governors of Yobe, Adamawa, Taraba, Gombe and Bauchi to ensure the proper distribution of the relief materials to the people.
Governors Disagree On FG Palliative Measures
Meanwhile, Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki, has expressed shock and fear about the federal government’s inability to plan and effectively respond to the fuel subsidy removal policy that has further improvised Nigerians, inflicting hardship and suffering on the people.
Obaseki told journalists in Benin City that he had raised the alarm following the mismanagement of the nation’s economy, noting that the country’s situation is taking a turn for the worse as a result of bad policies by the government at the centre.
But Anambra State governor, Prof Chukwuma Soludo, however, disagreed with his Edo state counterpart, on the federal government’s palliative measures for cushioning the effects of oil subsidy removal.
In his reaction to Obaseki’s view that the federal government palliative measures were deceptive and incapable of cushioning the hardship the oil subsidy removal has brought on Nigerians, Soludo who spoke through his press secretary, Christian Aburime, urged Nigerians to embrace the measures adding that the president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu meant well with it.
He said, “The recent palliatives measures by the federal government will at least begin to ameliorate the suffering of the masses especially the most vulnerable group in the society.
“We believe that Mr President meant well and everyone should support him in the quest to making the country a better place for all Nigerians.”
Meanwhile, Niger State governor, Umar Mohammed Bago, said the palliative measures are not sustainable
Speaking during the distribution of farming inputs to farmers, Bago said, “I want to use this medium to thank President Ahmed Bola Tinubu, the commander in chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, for coming to the aid of vulnerable Nigerians, but we must be honest with ourselves. The palliatives scheme cannot be sustained. We have to go back to the farm to reflate our economy”.
“In Niger State we are poised to make Agriculture become the focus of our administration in addressing poverty and food security,” the governor added.
On his part, Bayelsa State governor, Diri, wondered why the state government should oppose the federal government if it said it wants to give states palliative.
The National Economic Council (NEC) had at its meeting last week Thursday announced that federal government had approved N5billion for each state of the federation as palliatives to cushion the effect of fuel subsidy removal.
Making reference to the NEC meeting, Diri said, “So if there was objection to it, the governor would have said so, that I don’t agree with the federal government. If the federal government decides on their own that they want to give each state palliative, the state will not reject it.”
In Delta state, Sir Festus Ahon, chief press secretary (CoS) to Governor Sheriff Onorevwori, said in as much as we appreciate what the federal government has done, we still hope and pray that President Bola Tinubu will come up with more palliatives that would cushion the hardship Nigerians are going through today as a result of the fuel subsidy removal.
“Nigerians didn’t bargain for this harsh economy. Many Nigerians are now living from hand to mouth. Cost of transportation has gone up, far above the reach of the common man.
“Nigerians have suffered untold hardship in the last eight years under the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led federal government”.
On his part, Nasarawa State governor, Abdullahi Sule, has said President Tinubu meant well for Nigerians by introducing palliatives to mitigate the effect of subsidy removal.
He said the initiative is pro-masses, while describing it as unprecedented and impactful.
The governor who spoke through his senior special assistant on Public Affairs, Peter Ahemba, said it was wrong to describe the programme which its implementation was just commencing as deceptive.
Governor Sule had on Tuesday flagged off the distribution of palliative received from the federal government.
He said the success of the programme would largely depend on how benefiting state governments handled its implementation.
“We have received part of palliative, especially food items and have commenced the distribution. This is a practical demonstration that the programme is on course,” he stated.