Tijani Kazeem, Abuja
Critical stakeholders of the North, the Northern States Governors Forum held a meeting on Monday 2nd November, 2020 at the Council Chamber, Sir Kashim Ibrahim House, Kaduna and resolved to end the plethora of challenges bedeviling the region.
The meeting, among other things resolved that; traditional rulers must play positive in the governance architecture of the country, believed in the indivisibility, indissolubility and unity of Nigeria, posited that mechanisms for social media censorship be put in place to salvage the nation from separatist agenda, called for urgent steps to eradicate poverty in the north, and supports police reforms.
Below is the communiqué at the end of the meeting:
1. In furtherance to its resolution to further engage with the critical stakeholders of the North, the Northern States Governors Forum held a meeting today Monday 2nd November, 2020 at the Council Chamber, Sir Kashim Ibrahim House, Kaduna.
2. The meeting was attended by His Excellency, the Senate President, of the Federal Republic, the Honourable Deputy Speaker and other members of the National Assembly, the Chief of Staff to the President, the Minister of Federal Capital Territory, the Minister of Information and Culture, the Inspector General of Police, Principal Officers of the National Assembly, Chairmen of the Northern States Traditional Rulers Council led by His Eminence the Sultan of Sokoto amongst others.
After extensive deliberations the following resolutions were arrived at:-
3. Appreciates the roles of Traditional rulers in containing the menace of Endsars protests in the north. Collectively agreed that traditional rulers be given formal roles in the governance architecture of the Country.
4. The meeting rejects and condemns the subversive actions of the Endsars protest. The superlative agitations and other change regime actions outside the ballot Box soon take advantage of the peaceful protests to push for their seperative agenda. The meeting endorse the indivisibility, indissolubility and oneness of the Nation.
5. The meeting took note of the devastating effect of the uncontrolled social media in spreading fake news. Therefore, calls for major control mechanism and censorship of the social media practice in Nigeria
6. Meeting raises attention on the need to keep strict watch on the Federal Capital Territory to guide against unwarranted and destructives protests to safeguard critical assets of the Nation.
7. Meeting ccommends the national Assembly and the Presidency in being proactive in addressing the issues of Endsars protests across the country.
8. Need to further push for amicable resolutions of ASSU strikes to enable students resume their studies.
9. Meeting resolved that there is the need for regular meetings of this nature. Calls for further engagement with other critical stakeholders such as Religious Leaders, Business community, youths leaders etc. Accordingly, the meeting approved the setting up of two major engagement committees:
(a) Committee on roles of traditional Rulers
(i) Emir of Lafiya as Chairman
(ii) Two Representative from the National Assembly;
(iii) 1 Representative from each of the 3 zones
(iv) 1 from federal Executive Council.
(b) Committee on Youth and Civil Societies
(i) Emir of Zazzau as Chairman
(ii) 1 representative each from Geo Political Zones
(iii) 1 each for the youth Geo political Zones
(v) 1 representative of Women / Girls
(vi) One each of Muslim and Christian Clerics
(vii) Persons living with disability;
(viii) Business Community
(ix) Representative of the Inspector General of Police
These engagement Committees are to commence work immediately.
10. Appreciates the role of religious leaders, such as the Ulamas, JNI and CAN for their positive interventions in resolving the Endsars conflicts.
11. Calls for collective effort in addressing the lingering challenges of the North e.g. Almajiri system, insecurity, illiteracy, poverty, etc
12. Commends the roles of His Eminence, Royal Highnesses and other Royal Fathers in ensuring that the Endsars protests did not escalate significantly in the North by adopting sentimental issues such as ethnicity and religion, the Forum resolved to continuously engage with their Royal Highnesses in addressing this challenge.
13. Meeting noted and appreciated the far reaching efforts of Northern States Governors’ Forum in taking proactive measures to address the Endsars protest in the country and the North in particular. Equally Forum notes with satisfaction the actions taken by the Governors to revive the economic fortunes of the region particularly during the post Covid-19 period.
14. Forum appreciates the roles of National Assembly in engaging the youths and other critical stakeholders of the Nation in resolving the Endsars conflicts.
15. Forum appreciate Mr. President and his Cabinet for the quick intervention in meeting the demands of the Endsars protesters and resolved to give him the maximum support as he roles out measures to address the lingering challenges of youth unemployment, banditry and Boko Haram insurgency in the country.
16. The Forum also appreciate the roles of the youth for their response to the Endsars, in curtailing the spread of hooliganism, thuggery and other separatist tendencies.
17. Forum appreciates the major reforms going on in the Police Force and pledges to support Mr. President on this course.
18. The Meeting resolves to support the Nigerian Police Force to serve the Country better and calls for the strengthening of trust between the people and the Police.
19. The Meeting expressed concern over the low level involvement of relevant stakeholders in the implementation programmes of Government and calls on the relevant Agencies to review implementation strategies to make for maximum impact and benefits.
20. Condemned attacks on persons and properties of especially persons living in other parts of the country. Also condemned attacks and burning of places of worship in some parts of the country in the name of Endsars protests.
His Excellency, Rt. Hon. Simon Bako Lalong, KSGG, Chairman, Northern States Governors’ Forum.
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