Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan speaks to the Director General of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Muhammad Sani Sidi as Governor of Borno State Kashim Shettima looks on, during a surprise visit to Maiduguri, on January 15, 20 ~ OLATUNJI OMIRIN
Abuja - The member representing Bama/Ngala/Kala-Balge in the House of Representatives, Abdul-Rahaman Terab, has alleged political intimidation in camps set up for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Borno State.
Terab alleged that some people loyal to the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) led administration in the state were maltreating his supporters and were resorting to violent thugs to destroy their property, beating them up and even using live ammunition on them in order to threaten them to desist from supporting him and the People’s Democratic Party.
“It was unfortunate that those that are sympathetic to me and the PDP are singled out for blackmail, intimidation, humiliation and are further traumatized in the IDP camps. It is on record that the recent incident of such politics of bitterness was unleashed on our supporters when our campaign sites opposite the Government Girls Senior Secondary School Yerwa was vandalized by unscrupulous elements purportedly acting on the orders of the Executive Governor of Borno State, on his arrival from Abuja, to be precise on Tuesday 11th February, 2025 around 6pm.”
The lawmaker said operators of the camp have resolved to stop any kind of good gesture in the form of food and sanitary items coming from him and the PDP by stopping volunteer youths who help out in the camps.
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“Some volunteer youths who help out in the camps especially the National Youth Service Corps were physically threatened by a senior member of the authorities to blackmail them and brand them as Boko Haram supporters if they show their support to us.”
He said if this trend of thuggery and intimidation were allowed to go unabated, the consequences on the days of the elections could be more catastrophic and capable of further sending the delicate peace into ruins.
However, Borno State government through the Commissioner for Information, Home Affairs and Culture Mohammed Bulama said the lawmaker was “playing a PDP script.”
“It was a surprise that an educated person like Terab has chosen to make very childish allegations that he knows are without basis simply because apparent defeat stared him in the face ahead of the March 28 rescheduled elections,” Bulama said.
He claimed that the lawmaker was preparing excuse for his impending defeat at next month's election.
“We are aware that there are some of his kind, who are said to be holding meetings with a dubious plan of having the Federal Government take complete control of all IDPs with intent of using or ignored the camps for whatever purpose that is political,” he added.