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Published On: Sun, Aug 10th, 2014

Five days after Boko Haram attack, Emir of Gwoza still missing

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Borno state Gov. Kashim Shettima, speaks to the Associated Press during an interview at the Government house in Maiduguri, Nigeria, Wednesday, Sept, 28. 2011. Security forces arrested a top commander of a radical Muslim sect who ordered killings in the northeastern city where the group's mosque once stood, bringing a new calm to the restive region, a governor said Wednesday. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)From Mustapha Isah Kwaru, Maiduguri

Borno state government, at the weekend said it had not been able to establish contact the Emir of Gwoza, Alhaji Mohammed Timta since last week’s attack by suspected Boko Haram insurgents in Gwoza, headquarters of Gwoza local government area (LGA) of the state.

Governor Kashim Shettima disclosed this, while addressing thousands of Gwoza indigenes on a peaceful protest over Boko Haram attacks, at the Government House, Maiduguri. He however confirmed the killing of the Chief Imam of Gwoza, Alhaji Imam Bamanga by the insurgents.

Shettima, who was visibly touched by the killings, appealed for calm, saying government would address the situation.

“I want to appeal to all of you to consider this as an act of God.

This crisis affect all of us in Borno; it is not an ethnic or religious war, but a trial from God,’’ the governor said.

He added:“ In the last 48 hours, we have been trying to make contact and ascertain the whereabout of the emir but to no avail.

Unfortunately, the Chief Imam was among those killed by the insurgents.’’

Shettima said he was deeply touched by the continuous killings and destruction of properties by the insurgents.

“The emir is my mentor, I feel sad about the situation.

I have been busy trying to make contact to ascertain his where about. “I have spoken with the president three times on the onslught in Gwoza.I have also made contact with the National Security Adviser on the issue”, he declared Shettima said although he was seriously concern on the attacks in Gwoza, he had limited power on the issue, but said he plans to travel to Abuja and seek audience with President Goodluck Jonathan over the issue.

Shettima urged residents of the state to observe a two-day fast, between today and Tuesday, to seek for divine intervention on the crisis.

“We should all fast and pray again, from Monday to Tuesday, to seek God’s help on the problem. I believe that God answers the prayers of people in need, especially women and children quickly,’’ he said.

Earlier speaking, opinion and political leaders in Gwoza had told the governor that the protest was aimed at seeking an end to the onslaught in their area by suspected Boko Haram insurgents and appealed to both the state and the federal government to take drastic measures towards ending the crisis.

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