By Adamu Muhd Usman
“If you can tell… and show… let them see and feel… taste or smell the evidence, then you will reach the jury”
—-Merlin Bellis (1907 – 1996) US lawyer.
Jigawa state governor, Alhaji Abubakar Muhammadu Badaru says; his government has provided skills and employment opportunities to over one hundred and thirty four thousand (134,000) people in the state in his first tenure and many in the his second administration and said that the beneficiaries were mostly youth and women.
He said, creating job opportunities for self-actualization, through targeted empowerment programmes, formed the cardinal objectives of the sustainable growth and development agenda of his administration.
According to him, his administration has adopted a demand-driven and skills gap approach, with an assessment team deployed to every Local Government Area to identify specific trade and enterprise gaps.
He said the intention was to fill such gaps in a profitable and sustainable way by matching each intervention with the gap identified.
If Governor Badaru of Jigawa State is truly serious with his employment and empowerment agenda and he means well for the people of Jigawa State , he should not ignore the reality of knowing and attending the suffering of the masses in his state especially with increase of crimes because of unemployment.
Badaru should hearken from his inception to set a motion for proper implementation, modification and improvement of the standard of living of the people not sharing of goats and N20,000 to the youths and women in the state from his inception as an empowerment agenda in this 21th century, but Alas! That is on the contrary because, the water runs deep as of now even the most celebrated and publicized J-Power programme (replica of N-Power) is nowhere to be found despite all the processes of its actualization for the past two years. In short even the selection of the beneficiaries of the empowerment then has been politicalized and there was no continuity in the empowerment agenda.
Sule Lamido established, upgraded and equipped Jigawa state Skills acquisition centres in Kazaure, Hadejia, Gumel, Ringim, Dutse and Birnin Kudu respectively which together trained thousands of youth in various skills such as Carpentry, Paint Making, Tailoring, GSM Repairs, Satellite Installations, Chalk and Shoe Making and many more which earned Jigawa State credit as the most valuable and active state on youth empowerment programmes. His administration also established and equipped the Kila Cassava processing plant in Gwaram L G also meant to empower youth and adults.
If the above Skills acquisition centres and companies can gain the attention of Badaru’s administration with sincerity of focus and purpose since inception the projects can serve as a source of revenue to the state, a solution to unemployment to hundreds of thousands youths and a way of achieving the paradigm shift of the administration, so to say.
Another narration from his government on employment which disqualified his claim that he employed many youth is “Because of the importance the present administration attaches to filling the ever increasing teacher gap a systematic, free and fair teacher recruitment policy was applied in recruiting more than 300 teachers senior secondary schools and 620 for basic education.
The second round of the exercise to recruit additional 200 and 773 teachers for senior secondary and basic education, respectively has reached advanced stage” So, how many teachers were employed to qualify to that number, (134,000) because we expect more employment opportunity in education department or ministry. But the number are very less here. Yes, we have not seen any visible evidence of the employment and empowerment in the state to justify that claim (134,000) couple with retirement of over 4000 workers in the state in the last two years without their replacement.
Sir, we even anticipate reshuffle of cabinet or changes in Jigawa as the FG and other states did recently to flush the system, straighten and strenghten the administration, bring in new hands with fresh idea, improve the situation for better and move the society forward but in Jigawa the case is the reverse.
In line with our discussion, if the government of Alhaji Abubakar Badaru has good, serious, and lasting agenda for its people, what is it doing about its plan on Kafin-Hausa rice farming pragramme? in which he even invited Alhaji Aliko Dangote to visit and inspect the area in Kafin-Hausa local government with measurement of land and other promises for the past two years but still no show.
Your Excellency, you spent 75% out of your 8 year term, what proper and tangible plan do you have for Jigawa youths? Bear in mind that, Jigawa state needs greater care and attention because possibilities of greatness are now limitless because you have abandoned the previous government’s approach, plan, policies and programmes that keep Jigawa moving, committed, secured, progressing and productive. Truly, we need rapid improvements. In your remaining two years or perhaps one year because the remaining one year will go on 2023 agenda for party activities, campaigns, elections and transition (handover)
Sir, if the youths in the state are rended useless, not being engaged, encouraged, supported and guided, who will take the mantle of leadership of the state and even the country at large? Excellency, you need to pattern your belt very well and very tight to rule with speed. We wish you God’s guidance to save Jigawa from its present predicaments of hundred of thousands youths roaming the streets of Jigawa without empowerment not to talk of employment.
Your Excellency sir, all we care and mind is honesty, transparency, accountability, equity and commitment for Jigawa to reach a greater height.
We promised to be law abiding citizen. We say no to drug abuse, no to social vices and political thugs etc on how Dr. Sule Lamido trained and guided Jigawa youths to be when he was the governor of the state (2007-2015) and up to date he did not relent on his crusade in seeing them becoming a good and sound ambassadors and future leaders of greater, peaceful, secured, progressing and united Nigeria.
May God come to our aid and bless Jigawa and Nigeria as a whole and bring a lasting peace and prosperity in the country. Amen.
Adamu writes from Kafin-Hausa, Jigawa state.