Tue. Jul 23rd, 2024

Nigeria: Don’t Make Zamfara Ungovernable –Group Tells Matawalle

A socio-political group, the Zamfara Integrity Forum (ZIFO), has accused both the Minster of State for Defence, Bello Matawalle, and the All Progressives Congress, APC, of trying to cause political crisis through the issuance of unguided and inflammatory statements in the state.

The Coordinator of the group, Alh. Yunus Zubairu, who made allegation in a statement on Friday in Kaduna, observed that the minister’s actions could make the state ungovernable and disturb the fragile peace the state is currently enjoying.

“The good people of Zamfara state reject in totality the antagonistic posture of the former governor who should instead be focused on his national assignment.

The statement recalled that under Matawalle as governor for four years, the state witnessed the worst of insecurity since its creation on October 1, 1996.

“Insecurity became quite alarming in the Zamfara state under the watch of Bello Matawalle who incidentally was made governor through the court not by popular votes of the people.

According to Zubairu, when Matawalle took over as governor in 2019, Zamfara state’s poverty rate was 73.98 per cent, making it one of the worst as against the national average of 40.1 per cent.

“Instead of improving on the situation, the people got poorer. The state had a higher percentage of poor people than Sokoto, Taraba, Jigawa, Ebonyi and Adamawa states, according to a report by the Statista.

“The multi-dimensional poverty index released in November 2022, stated that 78 per cent of Zamfara people are poor, meaning poverty worsened under Matawalle, from 74 to 78 per cent,” the group stated.

According to the statement, it is unthinkable that Matawalle who mismanaged the state could be antagonising the current administration.

“If not the APC, which party would accommodate the likes of Matawalle in its fold? It was due to his zero political worth that led to his woeful defeat in the 2023 elections.

“The needless campaign of calumny against Governor Lawal Dauda will amount to distraction from discharging his duty as the chief security officer of the state and his strenuous efforts in restoring lasting peace with Matawalle in the forefront, if he truly loves the state.

“We are interested in seeing economic growth, peace, and security in the state. Matawalle who now is occupying a very responsible and strategic position, should instead use his position to bring peace by combating crime, especially in the North-west and particularly Zamfara.

“Instead of doing just that, he’s busy fanning the embers of discord among the people of the state”, it said.

Matawalle and the APC should gloat over their loss of the election in the state and subsequently, at the tribunal.

They advised the minister to retrace his steps and focus on ensuring that Nigeria is more peaceful, adding that if he fails to heed their advice they would be forced to write the Presidency.

The group urged Matawalle to concentrate on his new job in Abuja and allow peace to reign so that the good people of Zamfara who rejected him and his APC in a clear contest could witness development.

“It is said that he who comes to equity must come with clean hands. The records of Matawalle’s performance do not show him as a performer.

“He is, therefore, the wrong person to criticise a government in Zamfara state, thinking that the governor will do miracle in a month where him and his party, APC, failed to make positive impact in more than a decade.”

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