Vice President Kashim Shettima on Thursday restated President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s commitment to stabilising and developing the North East region, saying his principal means well for Nigeria.
“The President means well for the nation. I have seen the soul of Bola Tinubu; I will not stop saying that,” the VP told a delegation of North East Leaders of Thought (NELT) that paid him a visit in his office at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The North East leaders presented the North East Development Strategy and Plan document to the Vice President.
Sen. Shettima who observed that the delegation is made up of crème de la crème of the North East geopolitical zone and reflects the diversity of the region, said at their age, they were only fighting for their children and grandchildren and not for any pecuniary interest.
He assured the group that the North East Development Strategy and Plan document will get to the managing director of the North East Development Commission (NEDC) within 48 hours.
Recalling the visit by the board and management of NEDC who had presented a 10-year master plan for the region’s development to him on Wednesday, Shettima stressed the need for transparent leadership.
He stated: “80% of the anticipated NEDC budgeted fund is coming from multilateral agencies, and if you put in place a leadership that is inept and corrupt, you cannot get a dime from these agencies.
“I tasked the NEDC management to ensure that they make tangible investments in three key areas: electric vehicle technology, agriculture, including irrigation technology, and digital education.
“We are all united by poverty, insecurity and destitution. Our problem is not ethnicity or religion. Religion has become a body of rituals devoid of practical value. We must unite to fight these common enemies,” the Vice President expressed.
The NELT delegation led by Maj. Gen. Ibrahim Bata Malgwi Haruna (rtd), a former Federal Commissioner for Information and Culture, said the organ is a non-partisan and non-religious body bound by common zeal for the North East.
Maj. Gen. Haruna said, “The document provides a roadmap for the development of the North East and covers areas such as security, agriculture, manufacturing, business and trade, solid minerals, and health, among others.
“We have captured key deliveries for each sector. This document will provide an insight into addressing some of the issues facing the region,” the elder statesman pointed out.
Members of the delegation included Dr. Bawa Garba; Senator Umar Usman Dukku; Senator Abubakar Halilu Girei; Senator Adamu Muhammad Bulkachuwa; Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar (SAN), former governor of Bauchi State; Arc. Ibrahim Bunu; Bala James Ngilari, former governor of Adamawa State; Ammuna Lawan Ali, David Garnvwa and others.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of The State House, Abuja.