Plateau State Governor and Chairman of Northern Governors Forum, Dr. Simon Bako Lalong has challenged Northern Governors to come up with a strategic plan to end kidnapping, banditry, poverty and other forms of insecurity bedeviling the north.
Lalong in a press statement issued yesterday by his Director of Press Affairs, Dr. Makut Simon Macham after the Governor’s Forum meeting said it is time to find a lasting solution to the lingering challenges in the region.
“This meeting has been summoned to enable us to address some matters of urgent importance in the survival of our region and the well-being of our people.
“You will recall that during our last meeting, we deliberated extensively on many issues, particularly the nature of the insecurity currently bedeviling our region and how to deal with the situation.
“We set up a Committee under the Chairmanship of His Excellency, Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State, to inter-alia develop a comprehensive regional plan of action that could bring lasting solutions to the lingering crises.”
Lalong said the region will come up with a common position with regards to the livestock management in the country which has continued to generate discourse, controversy, misinformation and even politicization.
“You are aware of the many attempts to find lasting solutions to the incessant Farmer-Harder clashes, cattle rustling and associated criminalities such as banditry, kidnapping among others.
“We shall deliberate on the National Livestock Transformation Plan (NLTP), which was commissioned by the National Economic Council chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and seeks to support and strengthen the development of market-driven ranches in the livestock ecosystem for improved productivity through breed improvement, pasture production, efficient land and water utilization.
“As a region that holds the comparative advantage in livestock management as an economic and socio-cultural vocation, we need to come up with a common front on how to synergize and draw from the funds available for the programme and ensure that we derive maximum benefits for our people.
“This is important because of the urgent need to cultivate the buy-in of all stakeholders and provide a conducive environment for nomadic herders and those who rear livestock using the private/public partnership model to key into the National Livestock Transformation Plan of the Federal Government.”
Lalong said Northern Governors will continue to discuss the best option of solving the Almajiri phenomenon which has continue to be a social and security challenge that the region ought to find a solution.
“We cannot afford to do otherwise because our people have entrusted us with their mandate and look up to us in dealing with their day to day challenges, which include poverty, illiteracy, insecurity, and economic opportunities.”