Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State has warned that Boko Haram’s menace will be “a child’s play” if the Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) is allowed to grow.
He gave the warning when he appeared on the weekly briefing organised by the Presidential Communication Team at the State House, Abuja, on Thursday.
Zulum, who asked the Nigerian Army to re-strategise and defeat ISWAP, said the group pose a threat to the entire nation.
He said ISWAP is building up in Borno through exploiting its closeness to the Sahel.
President Muhammadu Buhari was urged to re-engage external mercenaries for additional support in the battle against terrorism.
Zulum, while speaking on the successes achieved so far in the war against insurgency in the North East, said, “All that I have said now, would never have been feasible without the support of the government. But notwithstanding all the contributions of the federal government, we still have some challenges.
“One, I said it before, a growing number of ISWAP in some parts of the state is a matter of great concern to everybody. In the shores of Lake Chad, again in southern Borno State. Luckily, I was told there was military deployment yesterday to southern Borno state to fight the insurgents in the Tudun Katarangwa area.
“But I think this is an early warning. We shouldn’t allow ISWAP to grow. ISWAP are more sophisticated, more funded and they are more educated. And we shall do everything possible to defeat ISWAP. Otherwise, what Boko Haram did will be a child’s play. This is an early warning that the Nigerian Army has to restrategise and defeat ISWAP.
“ISWAP will be a threat to the entire nation. Because of its proximity to Sub Saharan Africa, they are coming from Libya and others resettling here.”