…hold a summit in Bauchi over insecurity, others
By Charly Agwam – Bauchi
Youths from eight northern states have met in Bauchi, Saturday, with a mandate from the Northern States Governors Forum, to share ideas and find solutions to the myriad of challenges facing the region and the country.
The youths under the umbrella of ‘Committee on Youths Engagement Priorities and Inclusion in Governance in Nigeria’ among other things demanded the declaration of a State of Emergency in education in all states of the northern region to catch up with other regions of the country.
The youth committee blamed the poor education index as the major reason for the developmental setbacks in the region when compared with other regions of the country.
“We can no longer pretend that all is well. The north is burning and we are looking the other way. Two-thirds of our people are children and youths, and a massive number of them are out of school. Does that not explain the poverty and insurgency that our region is facing at this material time?
“Our leaders must do something before it is too late. Look at those areas where they have succeeded in educating most of their youths, they don’t have insurgency on this scale. Education readily solves most of the problem we are running helter shelter for.
“Take for instance, who can radicalize me to take up arms with all the education I have received? And why would I resort to kidnapping when I have the education and skill to be self-employed?” Zuwaira Umar, a Gombe state delegate queried rhetorically.
In his opening remark, the Bauchi state governor, Bala Mohammed represented by his Chief Of Staff, Ladan Salihu reiterated that the northern region is in crisis, tasked youths to hold governments accountable on all issues that are of interest to them.
The summit which lamented the non-implementation of the 35% affirmative action for women, non-involvement of youths in politics, tribal and religious tensions in the region among other issues had in attendance, hundreds of delegates from six Northeastern states, including Kano and Nasarawa states.