President, Goodluck Jonathan on Friday gave Borno elders a piece of his mind over the current security situation in the state. In his official visit to Maiduguri, the President who had earlier disclosed that amnesty cannot be extended to members of the oko Haram sect unless they come out pointed out to the elders that their request for the removal of the operatives of the Joint Task Force (JTF) from the state may not be feasible. .
The president noted that the elders would be held responsible if troops are withdrawn and anarchy sets in. He said “if the elders of Borno will sign an agreement that they will be responsible for any life lost after the removal of JTF, I will withdraw them”.
Speaking further, the President said: “let me be very frank, because the analogy that when one soldier is killed, a score of people would be killed by soldiers are not correct because we have always admonished that and we have always told the soldiers to conduct themselves within their professional ethics. And let me assure you that government would not sit down quietly for anybody to take weapon and start killing people in the name of insurgence. I don’t want to hear that one soldier is killed anywhere either in the Niger Delta or in Borno state or any part of this country, I will not preside over this country as President and allow that to happen or I will not take it lightly with anyone”.
“These soldiers leave their families and sleep in the bush and on the streets just so that you and I could have some sleep; and I would not want to hear that one of them is killed. I have given a directive to that effect. We have warned the soldiers to conduct themselves, not to kill innocent civilians; but I will not tolerate the death of one soldier, and I repeat, I will not tolerate the death of one soldier.” .