With full participation of the Nigerian military, Borno Governor, Babagana Umara Zulum, on Wednesday, reopened the 65km Bama-Banki boarder road which links to Cameroon and parts of Central Africa.
The road had been shut since around 2012 arising from activities of Boko Haram.
Zulum, alongside the Theatre Commander, ‘Operation Hadin Kai’, Major General Musa Christopher, traveled to the boarder town from Maiduguri.
Unveiling the road at Banki Junction on the outskirts of Bama town, Zulum appreciated the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari and the Nigerian military for gains being steadily recorded in peace-builing and stability of the North East region.
“I am very much impressed to witness the official reopening of this very important international road. This road has remained inaccessible to people since 2012 due to activities of Boko Haram, but with the coming of President Muhammadu Buhari, our gallant security agencies have worked towards today’s reopening of this road”, Zulum said.
…Gives Army 10 Operational Vehicles
The Governor released 10 surveillance vehicles to the Nigerian Army to enhance their security operations along the reopened road.
The vehicles were received by the Theatre Commander, ‘Operation Hadin Kai”.
… Warns Against Extortion of Motorists, Smuggling
Governor Zulum during the unveiling, strongly warned security officials to desist from extorting motorists and passengers while plying the road:
“As we were coming here today, I sighted some immigration personnel busy extorting our motorists along the Maiduguri-Bama-Banki junction which is unacceptable. I want to strongly sound a warning, especially to Immigration personnel and other sister agencies to desist from extorting motorists and passengers”, the Governor said.
Zulum gave a matching order for the arrest of anyone engaged in smuggling of goods across the road, especially those who may want to smuggle food items through the bush to convey to criminals.
“I have given a matching order to the military to arrest anybody engaged in smuggling of goods, especially diverting the main road to the bush with food items”, Governor Zulum stated.
He also pledged his total support to the Theatre Commander of ‘Operation Hadin Kai’, troops of 151 and 152 Battalion on provision of security to the road.
Earlier, the Theatre Commander, Major General Musa Christopher, thanked Governor Zulum for supporting the army in the fight against insurgents and promised to do their best to end terrorism in the region.
General Christopher said reopening of roads and resettlement of IDPs by the present administration signifies the end of Boko Haram which would be some of the achievements to be measured during his stay in the theatre.
After reopening the road, Zulum paid an unscheduled visit to Umar Ibn Ibrahim College of Education (UICEST) Bama, where he directed the state’s Commissioner for Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Resettlement (RRR), Engr. Mustapha Gubio, to immediately provide buses for students and ceiling fans to all classrooms/lecture theaters.