From Jubril Mianchi, Kaduna
Governors of Northern States have decried poor development of the region, decades after independence and blamed the situation on insecurity.
This was contained in a speech delivered by the Governor of Plateau State and Chairman, Northern Governors Forum, Rt. Hon. Simon Bako Lalong at the metering on Thursday, 25/02/2021.
According to Lalong “our region continues to carry perhaps the heavy burden of development in the country where the indices for quality of life are low within a large percentage of our population.
“Statistics have shown that we have a long way to go in terms of education, healthcare delivery, infrastructural development, food security, industrialization and human capital development among others.
“All these are exacerbated by the insecurity that has bedevilled us and the entire nation for many years now.
“This is why at several periods, we set up various committees to look into specific issues and advise us on what measures to adopt in changing the narratives”, Lalong stated.
President Buhari, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Ibrahim Gambari, expressed regrets with destruction of lives and properties occasioned by vandals and declared war toward arresting the situation which has over the years subjected people to tears and sorrow.
In his address, the president attributed the slow pace of growth and development in the country to unholy activities of vandals threatening the lives of Nigerians and economic wellbeing of the country.
He said “government will continue to deal with insurgents, bandits, kidnappers and other criminals who constitute treat to innocent citizens across the country.
“Criminals are criminals and should be dealt with accordingly without resulting to ethnic profiling”, President Buhari remarked.
Speaking further, the President told his audience: “the new Service Chiefs have been tasked to device new strategies and come up with how best to end this ugly situation where the lives of our people continue to be threatened.
“At this meeting, the Forum also discussed and devised ways of building stronger collaborations with the security architecture, the security personnel and the people in defeating terrorism, banditry and criminality across the region and the nation.
“Democracy and development indices are inexplicable low because without peace there can be no sustainable development and without development there will be no durable peace builder”, President Buhari noted.
After extensive deliberations, the Governors resolved to work with their Southern counterparts and appealed to their colleagues to extend their presence in the North with a view to achieving harmonious and peaceful coexistence among citizens