The Borno state government on Thursday inaugurated the state Islamic Preaching Board saddled with the responsibility of regulating preaching in order to prevent incitement of religious faithful.
The state is still embroiled in insurgency which is believed to have been as a result of unguarded preaching by the leaders of the Boko Haram sect.
The State Governor, Kashim Shettima who inaugurated the Islamic Preaching Board and the Pilgrims Welfare Board at the Government House Maiduguri, said that the establishment of the preaching board had become imperative to avoid a repeat of the Boko Haram insurgency.
He said: “In 2003 Taliban came out in Kanama and were defeated by the military, they re-grouped and attacked Bama and Gwoza in 2004 they were defeated; re-grouped and attacked Panshekara in 2007; re-grouped and came out in 2009 and were also defeated by the military.
“They re-grouped again in 2013 and 2014 and sacked many local governments. We must seek a permanent solution; hence the need to establish the board to curb the spreading of misguided ideology in the state.”
He said the government will also establish Tsangaya Regulatory Board to regulate the proliferation of Tsangaya school and teaching in the state, adding that the influx of of Almajiris need to be regulated to check spread of extremists ideology.
Shettima called on the chairman and members of the committee to bring to bear their experiences to make sure those with radical ideologies did not spread them in the name of preaching.
On the Pilgrims Welfare Board, the governor called on the members of the board to work closely with the Amirul Hajj Committee to ensure a hitch free 2016 hajj exercise.
The Islamic Preaching Board is to be headed by the Chief Imam of Borno, Laisu Ahmed, while Mohammdu Mustapha, Arabi Fatahi, Ali Mustapha, Ibrahim Mustapha among others as members.
While the Pilgrims Board has Ali Gapchiya as chairman, with Bako Gurantee, Abubakar Kyari among other as members.
Earlier in his remarks, the state Commissioner for Religious Affairs, Mustapha Fanarambe thanked the governor for constituting the two important committees, stressing that the constitution of the boards was an indication of the state government’s determination to ensure that the relative peace the state is experiences did not suffered a setback again.
He said the pilgrims welfare board inauguration could not have come at a better time, as the 2016 Hajj exercise has commenced, while the maiden airlift of Borno pilgrims is scheduled to take off on Saturday.
Speaking on behalf of the two Committees, Mohammed Ali Gapchiya commended the state government for inaugurating the committees and called on the governor to establish a State Council of Ulamas to serve as a spiritual link between the state government and the Ulamas.
He assured the government and people of Borno that they will do their best to ensure that they justify the confidence reposed on them.