Isa Gusau, Lagos: Borno Governor, Kashim Shettima says the people of the northeast geo-political zone will never forget President Muhammadu Buhari’s open love for them as well as the role played by the 8th National Assembly led by Saraki and Dogara following the passage of the North-East Development Commission Bill which was signed into by President Buhari. The Governor also added that no geo-political zone in Nigeria should wish to experience what the people of the northeast faced to necessitate a commission like the NEDC.
The Governor made these remarks in Lagos on Friday during an interview with journalists from the Nigerian Television Authority, NTA, and Channels Television.
’Having a Commission like the NEDC is a direct response to large scale devastation which no geo-political zone should wish to experience. If you look at the whole thing systematically, development commissions are largely set in place to fast track the recovery of huge economic losses. Borno for instance was taking 50 years backward by the destructions of the Boko Haram.
What the NEDC will set out to do is to help us accelerate the recovery of this backwardness so that the State recovers earlier than it would have taken us to recover. It is not something any section of the country should wish to experience.
For President Buhari, I must confess that if Buhari wasn’t elected in 2015, only God knows what would have become of Borno and rest of the northeast. We have been on ground from 2011 to date, the difference between our present and the past in the northeast is no less than light and darkness. Everyone in Nigeria is talking about the northeast today mainly because President Buhari who is the number one citizen of the country, is rootedly passionate about the stability, recovery and prosperity of the northeast. Usually, every society goes with the body language of its charismatic leader.
Since President Muhammadu Buhari became President in 2015, he has made determined efforts to reverse all the many years of neglect the northeast suffered from 1979 to 2015.
The President’s passion for the northeast is clearly understandable because this is a region that has lost thousands of its precious sons and daughters and suffered destructions of public and private infrastructure, worth $9 billion U.S dollars. That amount is over three trillion naira. Mind you, this amount is the product of a thorough and comprehensive assessment report produced by the World Bank in collaboration with the European Union and office of the Vice President using ground and satellite images of what Boko Haram has destroyed.
President Buhari is the greatest inspiration for us in the northeast because before President Buhari came on board, the northeast was gradually being forgotten in Nigeria’s socio-economic landscape. Don’t forget that even before the Boko Haram insurgency, the northeast geo-political zone was already the most backward in terms of attention by successive Federal administrations, in terms of all indices of development whether on maternal or infant mortality, poverty and what have you.
So, we can never forget about the role President Buhari has made and still making in the ongoing restoration of the northeast geo-political zone and the signing of the Northeast Development Commission Bill is only next to his strong determination to end the Boko Haram insurgency.
As for the National Assembly members, we will remain grateful to them. For Senators and Reps representing the northeast, as far as we are concerned, they have achieved 50 percent of what our people elected them to do at the Senate and House of Representatives, by the passage and Presidential assent to the Bill establishing the NEDC” Shettima said.