Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State said on Thursday that 52, 311 children in the state were orphaned by Boko Haram insurgency in the Northeast zone of Nigeria.
Mr. Shettima disclosed this in Maiduguri during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the state government, Fadama III and the World Bank (WB).
He also disclosed that some 54, 911 women were widowed by the crisis.
“The real victims of Boko Haram are women and children; they generated 54, 911 widows and 52, 311 orphans,” he said.
“If we fail to take care of these orphans and widows 10 to 15 years down the line; if we do not provide a good home for them, believe me they will not take care of us.
“And there is no tool for change; no equalizer greater than education, we are poise to invest in education and we do not have an option.”
Mr. Shettima said that the state government in collaboration with federal government, UN and development organisations had implemented various interventions programmes to address the humanitarian crisis caused by the insurgency.
He added that the government had also embarked on massive reconstruction and rehabilitation of residential homes, schools, clinics and public structures in communities liberated from the insurgents.
The governor reiterated government’s commitment to the completion of the projects, enhanced security; and the provision of alternative means of livelihoods to displaced persons, to enable them to return to their normal lives.
“In the coming months the story coming out of Borno will change, Borno shall witness an enduring peace, stability and progress.
“We have the work in terms of agriculture and all other additional resources for us to rebuild our state.’’
The governor expressed optimism that the successes recorded by the military in the counter-insurgency campaign would enhance security and ensure peace in the state.