By NBF News

Former governor of Borno State, Ali Modu Sheriff has begged the people for forgiveness over the shortcomings of his government, noting that he might have offended the people in the course of leading the state for eight years.

In his valedictory speech on Sunday at the Ramat Square venue of the inauguration of the new government, Sheriff declared that he might have stepped on many toes during his tenure, stressing that his shortcomings were not deliberate actions but zeal to drive the state to a greater height. 'I beg all the people that I have offended. I am begging for forgiveness from the Borno people. It is not easy to lead a local government not to talk of a big state like Borno. I might have stepped on many toes but that was not deliberate. It was to move things forward and meet up with epochal time challenges regarding inherited problems from my predecessors,' he declared.

Sheriff, who had been severally criticized by the people especially for his handling of the Boko Haram problem, said such things were bound to happen against the backdrop of some administrative problems, which he experienced. 'Such things are bound to happen in the course of administrative problems,' he added even as he appealed to those he called facilitators of Boko Haram to stop so that peace could return to the state.

He also recalled that he inherited a debt of N7 billion from his predecessor when he took over in 2003, a debt which, he said, was liquidated with a monthly payment of N100 million within three years. He however expressed delight that he was leaving the state with a surplus of N63 billion both for the state government purse and that of the local governments account.

While appealing to the former commissioners and other senior government officials to give same support to the new governor, he urged all to live and forget their differences to forge ahead and deliver the dividends of good governance. He said he was optimistic that the new leader would harness the available resources and propel the state to greater economic regeneration and transformation.