The Borno State Governor, Babagana Zulum, has disclosed that countries from the west have shown more concern for the plight of Borno people during such times when Boko Haram insurgency challenges were ravaging the state in no smaller measure.
He explained that their show of concerns, as against the alleged ‘unconcerned stance’ of rich Arab nations whose people share a similarity of religion and culture with the majority of Borno citizens, was surprising as well as soothing.
Zulum noted that while the state was expecting more from Arab countries, especially with factor such as religion binding the people together, help and succour did not come from where his administration had hoped would come.
Zulum stated this yesterday in Maiduguri when he received the Palestinian Ambassador to Nigeria, Saleh Saleh, in Maiduguri. Zulum praised Palestine for being one of the few exceptions, within the Arab community.
According to him, western nations, including UK, US, Canada among others have demonstrated concern and have made efforts to support our traumatized citizens in many ways as against rich Arab nations.
“I am a practical person. I work with the realities I see on the ground. In the face of our challenges over the years, we have received humanitarian support from the UK and other parts of Europe, the United States, Canada, Japan, and a host of others who has demonstrated concern and has made efforts to support our traumatized citizens in many ways especially on food, medicals, and livelihoods.
“However, that level of concern never came from Arab countries with whom millions of Borno people share similarities in religion and culture. We even have indigenous shuwa Arabs in Borno and this shows how our histories are tied.
“We have made severe efforts, written and visited embassies of Arab countries, especially those that are rich and not dealing with crises, but obviously a majority of the Arabs do not care about our situation, neither do they support us. The Arabs have not shown concern to us. Your visit, however, has renewed our hope especially and we are very grateful for your visit,” Zulum said.
On his part, the Palestinian ambassador informed Zulum that his country was concluding plans to support the state government in some areas of need.
“There are a lot of Palestinian companies in Nigeria, they are willing to work with the Borno State Government, we are ready to cooperate with you, we are ready to help in anything you want us to do that we can do” Amb Saleh said.
The Ambassador also said many Nigerians are currently residing in Palestine, particularly Borno indigenes, some of whom have diligently served the government and people of Palestine.
He cited that among Borno people in Palestine, a lady called Fatima Barnawi was once a minister and a police chief.