By SADIQ ABUBAKAR, Maiduguri –
Borno State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) has called on security agencies, agro rangers and the state government to intensify efforts in preventing Boko Haram terrorists’ attacks on farmers in the state .
The council made the call in a communique issued by its Secretary, Ali Chiroma Ibrahim at the end of the Borno State NUJ Council Congress in Maiduguri.
The Congress also expressed concern over the inability of the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) to publish in the public interest research reports on the prevalence of kidney disease in the state despite the release of N50 million to the hospital by Governor Babagana Zulum to that effect.
The communique, further, commended the Borno State government for constructing additional mega schools and recruiting teachers for the schools while urging the state government to take decisive action to enrol the large number of out-of-school children roaming the streets.
It also commended the Borno State government for implementing transport subsidy scheme in easing hardships citizens face in the wake of fuel subsidy removal which has facilitated the movements of citizens, particularly, the civil servants, and business community during the increased transportation fares.
The Congress also urged the government to establish bus stops for the public transport buses in strategic places for hitch free traffic flow on the highways to prevent possible clashes with the commercial Keke NAPEP tricycle operators within the state capital, Maiduguri.
It further lauded the state government for distributing palliatives to citizens across the state to mitigate the impact of fuel subsidy removal and hike in food prices in he market while urging the state government to monitor the distribution of the palliatives to prevent alleged diversion of the food items by some individuals.
The congress stressed that frequent checks and balances in monitoring and supervising the distribution exercise of the palliatives by the government will ensure the items reach the target people who are not yet benefited. The Congress called on the government to crack down on those diverting the palliatives and to increase the distribution.
The communique also said frequent clashes between commercial tricycle operators and government or public buses called for improved synergy and cooperation between the two parties while cautioning the Borno State Transport Management Agency (BOTMA) against blatant and unnecessary harassment of motorists and Keke NAPEP tricycle operators to the extend of removing plate numbers of motorists at the slightest arrests.
The Congress, however, commended the Borno State government for reconstructing the burnt famous Monday Market, urging the allocation committee to be fair and just in allotments of the new shops to the beneficiaries while commending the Borno State government’s efforts against diphtheria disease in the state.
It also urged the state government to increase public awareness campaigns on preventive measures against the disease and other diseases while expressing gratitude to the Borno State government for its ongoing supports to the NUJ in the state.
It also emphasized the importance of regular congresses by the chapels and warned chapels or members of the Union found defaulting in this regard would be sanctioned.