By: Joy Odor/Abuja
Worried about the problem of insecurity, high rate of poverty and educational backwardness in the north ,Senator Shehu Sani declared that northern leaders have failed despite opportunities of office to develop the region and its people.
He blamed the problems of insecurity, poverty and tensions stirred up across the country on failure of leadership ,with northerners not criticising President Buhari because, he is from the north .
While expressing dismay over failure on side of the northerners to hold Buhari accountable , despite the unabated killings and destruction of properties in the region, he said it is high time the President came up with sound policies to address high-level of poverty and educational challenge in the the North and other parts of Nigeria.
According to the lawmaker, who represented Kaduna Central Senatorial district in the 8th National Assembly , President Buhari needs to show concern now and look at the north with emphasis on investment in infrastructure, education ,tackling issues of ethnicity and religious sentiments as well as invest in young people and children of the poor.
Senator Shehu Sani who stated this during a Conference on Preparing Emerging Leaders held at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Kaduna, Northwest Nigeria on Monday stressed ,”If we have leadership that cannot tackle poverty using a the best of models, whether Chinese or welfarist ,then we have serious problems ”
While asking rhetorically question on how to solve problem of poverty when 80% of industries in the country have closed down , he noted ” In the past ,there are more industries than banks,but reverse is the case now .So ,we must invest in research to develop”.
He however urged President Buhari to do something urgent to tackle the issues of poverty and educational backwardness now , as the region is under time bomb.
He further stated; ” The North is tolerant of bad government because Buhari is in government and he is from the north.
“When powers move to the south , the north is good in holding leaders to account and when it moves to the North, we keep silent. We are shy , we are cautious, we are afraid of telling our own that the road in the north is bad. We are more courageous to tell the truth to power when the president doesn’t come from our region.
“Questioning President Buhari is more sympathetic when people are killed in the southwest than in the north and this is because, the(South)are holding him to account. Here in the north, you don’t because they are shy . they believe he is infallible and that he cannot be called to question.
“If 50 people were killed in Katsina and representative of the state is not ready to standup in the senate to talk about his people being killed, then it will go on and nobody will know. But if Fasoranti’s daughter is killed and representative from Fesoranti stood up and say I senator blah blah stand up to outrightly condemn the murder, the nations and the world will know.
“But if your people are dying here and the people you elected are afraid of being embarrassed and they don’t want to be categorized as been disloyal and be seen in the bad book , they will kill as many as possible and the perception of people outside is that all is well. So the north must not be docile because one of his own is in office.
“Northern leaders have failed to use the opportunity of office to upgrade the north and the country, to industrialize the region and to build a foundation for the generation of people like you. How do you solve the problem of poverty when the three most industrialized state in the north ;Kaduna Plateau and Kano— 80 per cent of their industries are closed down?
“For this country to survive, president Buhari must listen to the voices of reason. You may not like the face of Wole Soyinka, Balarabe Musa, and Obasanjo but read through the content of what they have written and see where adjustment can be made.
“President Buhari must be interested in his legacy and he has only four years. In any government After two years there will be heat and one the heat starts , you will not be able to concentrate and do your work.”
While urging youths across the country to always tell truth to power , the Senator urged them to revolt against divisive elements trying to sow discord by using religion or ethnicity.
“You must revolt against leaders and elders who are fanning the embers of discord and against people who will generalize one ethnic group to the other and say they are criminals” He stated.