NewsNorthern Group Dissociates Self from NEF's Comment Against Tinubu

Northern Group Dissociates Self from NEF’s Comment Against Tinubu

April 16, (THEWILL)- A group, Arewa Progressive Forum (APFO), has dissociated itself from the recent views of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) against President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s approach to security in the region.

The Northern Elders had claimed to have regretted its decision to vote for President Bola Tinubu in the 2023 elections, with a threat that the North had learned its lesson over heightened security challenges under the Tinubu-led administration.

Addressing newsmen on the development, the National Secretary of the forum, Magaji Abbas Danbatta, on Monday, said that the recent outbursts of the Elders forum did not represent the Northern agenda for peace and national unity of the country, which is not negotiable.

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To Dambatta, it was an error for any group or political association to come out openly and announce their regret over majority decisions, warning that northern elders are derailing from their counselling and advisory role to the government on national issues as it affects the region.

The group further supported the Minister of State for Defense, Bello Mohammed Matawalle, over his mature response to the NEF outbursts against President Tinubu, saying the people behind the claim were more interested in personal gains than the unity and survival of Nigeria.

“We wholeheartedly endorse the reactions of Minister of State for Defense, Bello Mohammed Matawalle, to some members of this group. They are not in tune with the current reality in the North. The reaction to their utterances by the Minister of State for Defence is appropriately done to safeguard the Presidency because it is an institution that needs respect & dignity from all Nigerians.

“Northern elders should be seen as neutral, mediators or opinion shapers on national unity, cohesion, and progress without regional bias. This is key because Nigeria’s unity can’t be negotiated on the page of newspapers.

“The same elders that ignored and failed to unite some of our political gladiators that are fighting one another in Kano, Sokoto, Zamfara, and Kaduna states are talking about the region being abandoned to its plights.

“Where were they when a former Kano State governor, Umar Ganduje, was having serious political & administrative issues with his immediate predecessor, Sen Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, that almost destroyed the economic development of Kano, a centre of commerce for the region; just like that of Zamfara State Governor, Dauda Lawal, who was known to be at loggerhead with his predecessor, now Minister of Defense, Bello Mohammed Matawalle, over issues that could have been amicably resolved?

“The same with Sen Aliyu Wamakko and Attahiru Bafarawa in Sokoto State before going into a fight with Aminu Waziri Tambuwal respectively.

“In Kaduna, there is a brewing misunderstanding between Governor Uba Sani and his predecessor, Nasir El-Rufai. All the Northern elders cared about was President Tinubu. Why abandon your house on fire, trying to quench another one’s place?

“We are concerned that the northern elders have one of their members as an adviser on political matters to the Vice President, the person of Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, who could have facilitated a meeting with who and who in the seat of power to discuss issues affecting the region or the country in general, rather than rushing to the press,” Danbatta submitted.

The Forum, however, noted and commended the joint and unrelenting efforts of the National Security Adviser, Malam Nuhu Ribadu, and Minister of State (Defence), Bello Muhammad Matawalle, whose proactive measures have helped improve security in the Northern region.

“We are of the view that President Tinubu’s approach to the issues of security in the North so far, especially Northwest, is one of the best compared to his immediate predecessor, Muhammadu Buhari’s approach,” he added.

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Tunde Omolehin is an award-winning Journalist with prose in investigative and storytelling that is connecting the dots between the under-reported communities and policymakers to ensure good governance and accountability.

Tunde Omolehin, THEWILLhttps://thewillnews.com
Tunde Omolehin is an award-winning Journalist with prose in investigative and storytelling that is connecting the dots between the under-reported communities and policymakers to ensure good governance and accountability.

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