The Borno State government in conjunction with the Nigerian Military on Saturday reopened the Maiduguri-Bama- Banki Road for commercial activities.
The Maiduguri -Bama – Banki Road is a major highway for commercial activities. The road which was a major transit route for conveying goods to three African countries was closed down in September 2014 because of the activities of Boko Haram terrorists.
In his remarks, the Theartre Commander Operation Lafiya Dole, Maj Gen Rogers Nicholas, noted that the reopening of the road is another remarkable day in the lives of people of Borno and the Nigerian Military.
Maj Gen Nicholas recalled that the road was closed down back in 2014 because of the activities of the insurgents in the general area which affected business and the economy of the area and state because, of its link to other African countries.
He said with the support of the Cameroonian Forces, the route was rid of the terrorists hence the decision to reopen the road for the people to continue their business activities as well as preparing ground for the return of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) back to their Communities.
“I am happy today that we are reopening this road to give our people the leverage to continue their businesses as well as enabling our people to return back home. I am using this opportunity to urge Boko Haram members who have not surrendered to lay down their weapons and surrender. The Military will not harm them as they are our brothers.
“I also urge those of us that have access to them to please talk to them to surrender. They are our brothers and sisters and I know that some of us have access to them. So please let them come so that we can join hands to develop our state and nation”, Nicholas pleaded.
He urged the members of the road transport workers to observe strictly the code of conduct that will be provided by the Military in using the road.
Declaring the road reopened, the Borno State Governor, Kashim Shettima, thanked the Nigerian Military for making the road which is a transit route to many African countries safe for business activities after it was closed down for years because of insurgency.
Governor Kashim Shettima who was represented by his Deputy, Usman Mamman Durkwa, also thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for empowering and restoring the dignity of Nigerian Armed Forces.
“ I appeal to terrorists who are yet to surrender, to do so. Borno State government will ensure their rehabilitation and reintegration back to the society to join in the development of our state. Borno State government will continue to support the federal government in bringing a lasting solution to the Boko Haram crisis. Borno State will also continue to work with the federal government to ensure that the remaining Girls and others in captivity returns back. I pray for the safety of everyone plying the road ,” he said.
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