The Chairman of the Northern Nigeria Governors Forum and Governor of Niger State, Dr. Babangida Aliyu on Wednesday in Abuja admitted that the spate of bombings and other forms of insecurity in the region is putting the economy of the region and indeed the whole nation in jeopardy.
Dr. Aliyu who spoke on behalf of the governors of the 19 states in Northern Nigeria at inauguration of the region’s Committee on Reconciliation, Healing and Security said the recurring insecurity in the zone must be seen as a threat to national stability, unity and progress.
Aliyu said, “The decision to constitute this committee of eminent Nigerians of northern states extraction was borne out of the deep concern of the Forum over recurring incidents of violence and wanton destruction of lives and properties which have almost crippled the economy of the northern states and paralysed socio-political activities to the detriment of our development and national pride.
“Hence, our focus has remained the promotion of the peace, unity and progress of all the northern states within the wider national interest of Nigeria.
“It is against this background that the Forum views the recurring insecurity challenges in the northern states and around the country as serious threats to national stability, unity and development.
“We therefore believe that the nation’s security and stability are of paramount interest to the Nigerian populace and that it is our moral obligation to ensure the protection of the lives and properties of all citizens of this country resident in our states.”
He told members of the committee that most of the challenges facing the zone, including poverty, unemployment, youth restiveness and violence, were manifestation of rejection of core values of honesty, equity, fairness and justice in their communities, societies and the nation.
The governor said one of the problems facing the leaders from the zone was that “we have allowed greed, corruption and incompetence to overwhelm us over time.”
The committee was given eight terms of reference to work with. They are to liase with stakeholders in the northern states, particularly the affected states, and get to the root of the security challenges and proffer solution and dialogue with any identified groups with a view to negotiating the way out of the menace.
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