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Presidency: Lawmaker Demands Apology For Shettima Over Criticisms On Inadequate Military Equipment

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SAN FRANCISCO, June 08, (THEWILL) â€' A member representing Monguno, Marte and Nganzai Federal Constituency of Borno State in the House of Representatives, Hon. Mohammed Tahir Monguno, said on Sunday that the Presidency should apologise to Borno Governor Kashim Shettima over criticisms that greeted his comment that the countrys military was ill-equipped and ill-motivated to win the battle against Boko Haram.

Monguno, who, in a statement issued in Maiduguri, noted that recent comments and actions of the Presidency has vindicated Shettima, said : 'President Goodluck Jonathan as well the Nigerian Army have, by their recent remarks, vindicated Governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima who was vilified by Presidency spokesmen after ‎he first raised the alarm that the military was lacking the right equipment to fight the Boko Haram terrorists in the Northeast.'

According to Monguno , 'I expect Presidency spokesmen like Dr. Doyin Okupe to be humble and courageous enough to tender open apology to Governor Shettima for wrongly attacking his reputation some months back. They should also apologise to Borno people for not taking the right step earlier.'

Citing a June 6 report of a national newspaper, titled 'Military wares issues being handled, ‎Jonathan says', which quoted President Jonathan as saying he was tackling the problems of inadequate equipment for the military ,the lawmaker said to any learned person, the report was a clear vindication of the alarm raised by Shettima. Monguno said the fact that the Presidency didn't deny the report in question since it was published on a Friday 'means there is no

question about it.'
He stressed that the recent acknowledgement by the Presidency that the military needed to be better equipped to take on the insurgents was an indication of what Shettima had said about the military being poorly funded by the Federal Government.

The lawmaker said rather than politicking the issue , the Presidency should have critically appraised Shettima's criticism to see he never meant any harm instead of seeing it as a harsh criticism of a PDP-led Federal Government.

'President Jonathan should have realised that Governor Shettima meant no harm to the Federal Government when he spoke months back given the fact that he was the one whose people were and still being killed with communities, public and private property worth billions being destroyed daily.

'Hence the need the for the Federal Government to support the Borno State Government that has spent over N10 billion of its own limited resources to fund military operations whereas it is the exclusive constitutional duty of the Federal Government to finance security in Nigeria,' he said.

Monguno therefore called for concerted efforts to secure the troubled Northeast, free the abducted Chibok schoolgirls and end the five-year-old Boko Haram insurgency in the region.