The Northern Governors Forum (NGF) on Wednesday, called on security agencies to investigate the allegation made by a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Obadiah Mailafia, in which he claimed that one of the northern governors is a Boko Haram leader.
The Chairman of the forum and Govenor of Plateau State, Simon Lalong, said in a statement that the forum was concerned over the weighty claim by Mailafia, insisting that it must be thoroughly investigated.
According to Lalong, the forum, which has been working with the Federal Government, security agencies, community, civil society, traditional and religious leaders as well as development partners to defeat terrorism, banditry and other forms of crimes in the region, finds the allegation very disturbing.
Lalong said, “We, as Northern Governors, have met severally to discuss insecurity in the Northern Region and the nation at large, where we did not only condemn the activities of terrorist groups such as Boko Haram, bandits, armed robbers, kidnappers and other criminals, but also engaged the President and all heads of security agencies in finding solutions to the problem.
“To now say that one of our members is leading Boko Haram in the Nigeria is a serious allegation that cannot be swept under the carpet. We demand immediate and thorough investigation”.
He also urged Mailafia and indeed all citizens with useful information on the activities of criminals and terrorist groups to assist security agencies and government at all levels with such intelligence for proper action.
The governor also hoped that such allegations are not smear campaigns or attempts to discourage the Northern governors who are putting in their best to bring an end to insecurity in the region.
He reiterated that the forum does not, and will not support the activities of any criminal group, adding that their families are also not spared as was recently witnessed when the convoy of Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno State was attacked.
Mailafia was earlier invited, detained and eventually released by the Department of State Services (DSS) over the claim.
Mailafia had served as Chief Economist in the Strategic Planning and Budgeting Department of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB).
The 63-year-old had also served as a deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from 2005 to 2007.