Posted by Garba Muhammad, Kaduna | 29 July 2017 | 1,360 times
Kaduna State Governor, Malam Nasir el-Rufai on Thursday advised the Northern Governors and traditional rulers to outline views on the question of the Constitutional amendments for the country.
El-Rufai, in his remarks at the meeting of the Northern States Governors’ Forum held in Kaduna, said the region should point the way forward with specific proposals that would strengthen the country, while devolving powers to the states and local governments.
The Governor averred that after the recent bitter experience, the leaders would not be forgiven if they allowed the emergence of new Sambisas in the region which provided safe refuge for outlaws.
According to him, robberies, kidnappings and cattle rustling are headquartered in these ungoverned forest ranges.
“Your Excellencies, Your Royal Highnesses, the challenges before us are immense. We commend the resilience of our communities in the Northeast which have begun the process of recovery from the ravages of insurgency. But security remains a challenge across our states. The frequency and savagery of communal clashes in some of our states, and the prevalence of untoward phenomena such as rural banditry, cattle-rustling and kidnapping need to be tackled,” he said.
The Governor added: “The festering sores left by previous conflicts in which proper closure, accountability for crimes and reconciliation were not effected appear to be accelerating a descent into impunity and a situation in which many elites are too short-sighted to recognise the dangers of embroiling our communities in repeated cycles of violence.
“The message needs to go out to our communities that peace requires a determination to have peace, sustain peace and protect it. There is no humane alternative to choosing to resolve all differences by exclusively peaceful and legal means. Our region is the most diverse area in our vast country.
“It cannot afford the ghastly luxury of transforming differences in religion, language and culture into sources of conflict, death and destruction. Your Excellencies, Your Royal Highnesses, we need to challenge our elite to stop the commoditisation of difference and unite our peoples for development and prosperity.
“For such efforts to be credible and sustainable, the state must vigorously reclaim its prerogatives as the guarantor of security. Robust actions in the security sector must be undertaken quickly to implant a visible, reassuring and effective presence of the protective hand of the state across our region. There are too many places where outlaws and non-state actors of all sorts have stepped into the ungoverned spaces like these forests.
“We should consider whether it is not prudent, for instance, for the states that through which the Kamuku, Kuyambana and Falgore forest ranges stretch to request that the Federal Government should hand them over for better and closer management. These forests constitute sources of perils to ordinary people, the states and the country.”
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