A former governor of Niger, Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu, has revealed that dreaded terrorist group, Boko Haram would have started in the State because the sect leader, Shekau, was living in a place called Mokwa.
He said this on Monday in Abuja during the 12th annual conference and general meeting of the Society for Peace Studies and Practice.
He said his prompt action on security reports made available to him while he was governor, stopped Shekau from establishing a Boko Haram base in Niger State.
Aliyu, however, called on government at the federal and state levels, including institutions, to read every security report they get.
He said: “If I go by newspaper reports, the Jos crisis, I understand intelligence report was written and that we should have been aware three or four days to that crisis, that it was going to happen,” Aliyu said.
“Now, if you are aware that things are going to happen and you let it happen, you can judge it in your heart.
“So, what I did was to be proactive and pre-emptive. Boko Haram probably would have started in Niger State because the Boko Haram leader, Shekau, was in Niger State in a place they call Mokwa.
“They were calling their place Daral Salam. In 1991, they were only nine people who went there and asked the Village Head for a farmland and he gave them.
“By 2007 when I went to Niger, they were over 7,000 and they have enclosed themselves, they have turned it into a territory and they were the only Muslims in their own world. But they were also engaged in armed robbery and abduction of peoples’ wives and children.
“I understand before I arrived there that two Immigration officers were sent to investigate and they became members.
“So, when I went, I read all the background information. Anytime their leaders were brought to Abuja, they would go back with more strength and they would be rewarded.
“So, I was wondering who in Abuja was doing this to them. I read and I was very lucky also that I had a proactive president then, Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, who assisted me and we discovered that over 80 percent of the people that were there were not Nigerians. And they were people who will be willing to slaughter you like you slaughter goat.
“What I did was to call all my colleagues who we discovered had indigenes there and alerted them that I am sending you your own people who have ran away from you, make sure you know their movement.
“The others that were not Nigerians, we took them to the borders and we paid their transportation to leave.
“And Shekau went to Lokoja, from there, we heard he had resurfaced in Maiduguri. And I thank God that he did not start in Niger because by now, I don’t know what would have happened to the Niger Bridge.”