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Nov 30, 2017


The Governor of Borno State Alhaji Kashim Shettima has reiterated the value of education in the life of a nation describing it, as one of the greatest game changers of our time. The Governor made this remark when some members of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN) paid him a courtesy visit recently at the Government house in Maiduguri, the State Capital. The courtesy call was part of the activities to mark the Golden Jubilee anniversary celebration of the Catholic Diocese of Maiduguri.

Alhaji Shettima who is also the Chairman of the Northern Governors forum and who expressed satisfaction  with the contribution of the Catholic Church in the education of the citizenry, noted that “the Catholic Church has always been a vanguard for Justice Peace and access to education in the country.” According to him, “many of our Nigerian leaders today in virtually all fields of human endeavor were educated in Catholic schools. Education is indeed the greatest game changer. We need to invest in education. This is why we must give kudos to the Catholic Church for excelling in this area.” He remarked.

The Governor who recognized that poverty is a common heritage in the Northern part of Nigeria however stressed that education is a key to bring people out of Poverty. “This is why we see the need to partner with the Catholic Church in Maiduguri to invest more in  education so that our people will come out of ignorance and poverty.” He said

 Governor Shettima who has stepped on many toes in his passion to make his administration in Borno State an inclusive one, stated: “Even though I am tagged as a rebel for being inclusive in admitting members of other faiths in my cabinet, I am happy because leadership is all about being fair and just to all as well as the ability to take the right decision.” Continuing he said: “Borno State under my watch is a State that is open to all. We can make our nation work if we make it open for everyone irrespective of ethnic or religious affiliation.”

Earlier in his opening remarks, Most Rev Oliver Doeme, the Catholic Bishop of Maiduguri who introduced the delegation of the CBCN to the Governor said that the Bishops were in Maiduguri on solidarity visit to pray and support the Catholic diocese of Maiduguri. He noted that the Governor of Borno State has been a father for everyone in the State irrespective of religious affiliation. “I can testify that our Governor has a tremendous respect for the Catholic Church. He has re-built some of our churches that were burnt down as a result of Boko-haram insurgency and he is always willing to collaborate with the church.” He said.

In the same vein, Dr Haruna Mshelia, the Commissioner for Health in Borno State who was asked to introduce the Governor to the CBCN delegation extolled the qualities of Alhaji Shettima as one who is fair and just to everyone in the state. “This is a Governor who, for the first time, in the history of Borno State, has demonstrated in words and actions, that everyone in the state is a stakeholder in the affairs of Borno State.” He stated.

In his own remarks, the President of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria (CBCN), Most Rev Ignatius Kaigama thanked the Governor for the good works he is doing in Borno State. “We are overjoyed to be in Maiduguri to see the high level of progress that is being made here. What we see on ground today is different from the negative stories we read in the media about Borno State. We are going to tell the good stories of Borno State as we go back.” The CBCN President assured.

Over twenty five Bishops from across the country were present for the courtesy visit prominent of which were the CBCN President, Most Rev Ignatius Kaigama and John Cardinal Onaiyekain, the Archbishop of Abuja.

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