From: Ali Abare, Gombe
Gombe State Acting-Governor, Charles Iliya, has corroborated recent claims of the backwardness of the North-East region of Nigeria.
He, however, blamed the situation on insurgency by Boko Haram members.
Iliya stated this, on Wednesday, while responding to a call by members of the Presidential Committee on North-East Initiative (PCNI), led by its Vice-Chairman, Alhaji Tijjani Musa Tumsa.
According to him, “Even before the insurgency, our region had been reported to be the most backward in Nigeria in many aspects”, the Gombe State acting governor lamented.
“This situation had grown from bad to worst following the calamities brought about by insurgency”, adding that “in Gombe State, we have had our own bad share of the Boko Haram activities of bombings in our markets, motor parks, schools, hospitals, banks security outfits, many loss of lives among others”.
He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for the initiative, which he said, was aimed at bringing back life to the region that has suffered economically, socially, educationally and in many other aspects of human endeavour.
“We thank the President for not leaving the region just like that after the insurgency. This issue we are discussing now wouldn’t have been discussed easily in the past, but foremost will be how to protect ourselves”.
Speaking earlier, Vice Chairman of the Presidential Committee on North-East Initiative (PCNI), Alhaji Tijjani Musa Tumsa, who represented the Chairman of the Committee, General Theophelus Danjuma (rtd), said the committee was in the state to engage the Gombe State Government and highlight areas of the committee’s responsibilities and special priorities of the state government.
He said the committee has a task of charting a way forward in terms of resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDP’s) under the “Buhari Plan” which seeks to harmonize the activities of all the five sub-committees into action.
The five sub-committees are Security, Humanitarian, Finance, Economy and Education.
He commended the Gombe State government over the way it handled the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP’s) in the state through resettling them into the society and promised to continue to partner with the state government.
Reports indicate that the position of the Gombe State government, documented was presented to the Federal Government during the North-East Economic Forum, hosted by the state in November 2013.