President Goodluck Jonathan will on Saturday take his presidential campaign train to Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, in continuation of his re-election campaign rally.
This will be the second time the president will be making a trip to Maiduguri in two weeks, the first being a visit to soldiers who are battling terrorists in the state in commemoration of the Armed Forces Remembrance Day.
The inability of the Jonathan administration to arrest the Boko Haram insurgency has become a campaign issue of the presidential candidates of two major political parties – Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress and Jonathan of the Peoples Democratic Party.
Jonathan will be expected to make the issue of the Boko Haram menace one of the issues he will be touching on while in Maiduguri, as the people of the town will want to know what the President plans to do to stop the reign of the Boko Haram insurgents.
Coming on the heels of the stoning of Jonathan’s campaign convoy in Katsina and Bauchi states, the governor of Borno State, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, on Friday made a strong appeal to his supporters and all citizens of the state not to show disrespect to the President and his entourage during the campaign visit.
Shettima made the call in a statement by his media aide, Mallam Isa Gusau.
The governor said the call became necessary because of recent incidents in Bauchi and Katsina states during which irate youths reportedly went wild, pelting the President’s convoy with various objects.
He described the act as disrespectful, show of intolerance and extremely bad politics.
The governor said, “From what I have read or heard in the media, so far, there has not been any issue of such in any APC-controlled states visited by the President and Borno should not be an exception. We have political differences and our differences are legitimate and based on the principles of our political parties and what we stand for.
“But we must remember that His Excellency, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, GCFR, is the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and as citizens of this country, we have an obligation to respect his office and his person.
“Our millions of citizens, who support the APC in Borno State and our presidential candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari, and anyone that supports me or any of our National and State Assembly candidates in the state, should shun any act of violence, intolerance and unlawful political behaviour before, during and after the President’s visit and should remain law abiding citizens of Borno State as our laws, norms and values demand.”
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