Vice President Kashim Shettima on Saturday in Maiduguri lamented that the Boko Haram insurgency had inflicted damages in the North-East to the tune of $9 billion.
According to the vice president, Borno alone had damages worth $6.8 billion.
“Boko Haram insurgency had inflicted damages in the North-East, to the tune of $9 billion,” he said. ” There are similar destructions across Adamawa, Yobe, Bauchi, Gombe and Taraba. If the North-East of Nigeria was to be treated as a nation, we are poorer than Chad, Afghanistan, Niger.”
The spokesperson for the Office of the Vice President, Olusola Abiola, in a statement, said Mr Shettima stated this while inaugurating the distribution of palliatives in the North-East.
Mr Shettima also performed the official groundbreaking for the construction of the 22.5km Jere Bowl road network project, covering Jere and Mafa LGAs in Borno, undertaken by the NorthEast Development Commission (NEDC).
The event coincided with the eighth meeting of the North-East Governors’ Forum.
Mr Shettima called on the NEDC to expand the scope of its interventions in the region to cover more road projects, regardless of their status.
” I want to urge the NEDC board to expand the scope of its intervention to cover more road projects across the North-East region, including Gombe-Bauchi, Maiduguri-Damboa-Biu and Gujiba-Biu roads, among many others.
“Though these roads are regarded as Trunk A roads, they will eventually be used by Nigerians, particularly the people of the northeast, ” he said.
Mr Shettima commended the NEDC board for its prudent management of resources and lauded the support of political leaders, including legislators from the region, for standing firm with the commission.
The vice president also commended the efforts of governors across the region for uniting the people despite their socio-political differences.
On the distribution of palliatives worth N15 billion to beneficiaries in 110 LGAs and 18 senatorial districts across the region, Mr Shettima reiterated the commitment of the federal government to the welfare of the people.
The items to be distributed to beneficiaries across the zone include mats, various clothing materials for women and children, blankets, rice, and vegetable oil, among others.
Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno called on NEDC to be more determined in the discharge of its responsibilities.
Mr Zulum said that as part of efforts to improve the region’s fortunes, governors would collectively checkmate the activities of illegal miners.