By; TINA PHINEAS, Yola
The North East Governors’ Forum has decried the falling standard of education in the region with a promise to remedy the situation.
Rising from a one-day meeting in Yola, the Adamawa State capital, the governors plan to address deficit in education and enhance human development in northeast Nigeria.
In a 13-point communique issued and read by Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, who hosted the meeting, the Governors’ resolved to adopt a regional approach in transforming education especially at the basic level.
” Forum has agreed to form the North-east council on education and enforce UBEC laws to protect and ensure all children have an opportunity to acquire basic education,” Fintiri said.
On security, the governors regretted the activities of Boko Haram insurgents, bandits, cattle rustlers and kidnappers still constitute seeious threat to sustainable development.
They maintained that though there is relative improvement in security situation in the subregion however, the forum intends to strengthen community policing and action to complement the efforts of other security agencies working tirelessly round the clock in ensuring security of lives and property.
The governors also frowned at the lacklustre attitude of the federal government towards provision of infrastructure in the budget noting that in the proposed 2021 budget, the federal government only made provision of a paltry N45.32 billion for infrastructural development in the region.
They noted with dismay that despite the challenges of development especially the infrastructural deficit in the north east, the 2021 proposed federal government budget makes provision only for N45.32bn for capital projects in the subregion. This represents a paltry 0.35 percent of the proposed N13.02trn.
” This means that north east is highly shortchanged. Forum demands national assembly to review the 2021 budget in the spirit of equity and inclusion.
” It equally mandates the north east caucaus of both the senate and house of reps to take steps to redress the imbalance”, the communique stated.
” The governors frown on the unfair treatment of the subregion in the provision of road infrastructure by the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing and the slow or outright non existent progress on the phase of roads already allocated in the subregion and call for immediate reactivation and review of existing road contracts in the subregion.”
The governors also decried the lack of budgetary provision in respect of Mambila hydro project in the 2021 budgetary proposal and called on the federal government to make the project a matter of serious priority.
The forum fixed the 14th March 2021 to conduct the next meeting in Bauchi