Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno grabbed media headlines when he complained about the inability of the military to protect the people of the State from attacks by insurgent group Boko Haram on Monday.
The Governor had lamented that terrorists are abducting people as close as 20 kilometers to Maiduguri, the State capital.
But barely 24 hours after, the has also acknowledged that that some of the soldiers have over the years displayed exceptional bravery in the battle against Boko Haram.
Indeed, during a visit to the headquarters of 151 battalion at Banki junction in Bama, Zulum announced a Christmas package for each of the over 700 soldiers and their officers, because, according to him, they have never been defeated by Boko Haram.
The Governor, according to a statement from his office, had on arrival, entered a closed door meeting with commander of the 21 special armored brigade, Brigadier General Waheed Shaibu and commanding officer of the 151 battalion, Major A.A Umar, after which the Governor addressed troops.
“On the basis of fairness, I treat everyone or group on their own merit. While we have challenges in some areas, we have successes in others, and one of those areas is this 151 battalion because you have never been defeated by the Boko Haram since formation.
“This battalion has largely stabilized all the areas under your jurisdiction here in Bama. I am principally here to on behalf of Government and the people of Borno State, once again, register our appreciation as I have done here before and as often do to other battalions and their brigades across the State. All of you have been very gallant and patriotic.
“We acknowledge all your sacrifices and we also know that you all operate under difficult conditions in different operational locations.
“We came with our widows might. Food will come your way and I have given a message to your commanders which will reach each one of you.
“Nothing can compensate for your sacrifices. We are grateful and we pray that Allah continues to protect all of you here and all our troops and volunteers and sustain your strength to remain undefeated.
“May God grant us permanent peace in Borno and Nigeria in general. God bless you all,” Zulum said.