Zamfara: Group urges public office holders to live up to expectations

Southern Nigeria Youth Movement has urged public office holders to live up to expectations and justify the confidence citizens reposed in them to build a strong, virileand equitable democratic society.

The movement in a press release signed by it President, Comrade Ikechukwu Nnamdi Okeke while citing an issue in Zamfara state, said its Governor, Dauda Lawal failed to know that government is a continuum from one administration to another for the good of the state and its citizens.

He said a visionary, purposeful, vibrant and resourceful leader would have hastened to complete the airport with adequate funds available to do so.

The Movement said “Lawal would not have been on regular foreign trips in search of investors if the cargo airport is operational. He abandoned it and stashed the funds in the bank to deny his predecessor credit for initiating this far-sighted project.

“It is now evident that the funds for the project was not diverted, siphoned, misappropriated, misapplied or mismanaged by former Governor Bello Matawalle’s administration as alleged by Lawal.

” Matawalle has been vindicated again as he had been in previous malicious allegations against him.

On the issue of #14.26bn loan for completion of Zamfara Cargo International Airport announced by the Debt Management Office (DMO), the group said it is unfortunate that Governor Lawal politicised this landmark people-oriented development project that would have provided employment and revive the state’s economy as soon as he assumed office calling it a white elephant project and abandoned the funds already provided to complete it in state bank account till the naira crash and astronomical inflation that has drastically reduced the value of the bond.

“Southern Nigeria Youth Movement wants to refresh Governor Lawal’s memory that Dr Bello Matawalle has been appointed Minister of Defence for State by President Bola Tinubu to champion the Renewed Hope agenda in tackling insecurity in Nigeria which comprises Boko Haram, banditry, insurgency, kidnapping, secession (IPOB), Eastern Security Network, militancy, communal conflicts, farmers – herders conflicts,cultism, oil bunkering, piracy etc.

“After the declaration of result of the 18th March 2023 governorship election in Zamfara State, Dr Bello Matawalle accepted defeat as a democrat and challenged its outcome through the laid down judicial process as enshrined in the Constitution and the Electoral Act.

“After exhausting all the legal avenues up to the Supreme Court, Matawalle accepted the judgement in good fate and extended hand of friendship to Governor Lawal to work for the progress of Zamfara State..

“As a serving Minister of Defence for State, he urged Lawal to collaborate with him to curb insecurity in the state which has been there for more than 10 years.

“National media constantly report the commitment of Matawalle to work with Governor Lawal to provide security in Zamfara State. On the part of the governor there is no such commitment or readiness to work with the Minister.

“In a two-day interactive session organized by a Coalition of Northern Civil Society Organizations, where service chiefs, Minister of Defence, Northern Governors, traditional rulers led by Sultan of Sokoto and prominent leaders in the region attended, Matawalle and Lawal promised the nation that they would work together in the fight against banditry and related offences to make Zamfara State safer.

“Unfortunately, Governor Lawal is not ready to work with the Minister having been blackmailing him on daily basis using his social media handlers to tarnish his image,” he said.