By; ISAAC ODEH, Kaduna
A well structured group code named, Arewa New Agenda (ANA) has thoughtfully and retrospectively set a strategy in motion aimed at bringing back the lost glory of Northern Nigeria (Arewa).
The convener of the group, Distinguished Senator Ahmad Abubakar Mo-Allahyidi, an Adamawa State politician after a two-day conference on building strategy imperatives of the Arewa organized by ANA in collaboration with Arewa House at the Abuja International Centre.
The communique issued, gave details of the two-day conference, attended by eminent personalities drawn from across the Northern region and several addresses and position papers were presented on different issues affecting Northern Nigeria.
Some of the very important personalities who made contributions, include the founder of the group, Senator Ahmad Abubakar, the chairman of the occasion, His Excellency, Senator Ahmed Yerima Bakura, the Director of Arewa House, Dr Shuaibu Aliyu, Dr. Summaiya Hamza, the representative of the keynote speaker, Senator Jonathan Silas Zwingina, and the representatives of the various associations and organizations from the North, invited to the conference.
Challenges and problems were identified by participants and measures recommended to address the issues facing the Northern region.
ANA whose vision is an Arewa Agenda 2023, for a Nigeria where the North is capable, vibrant and takes ownership of its destiny, observed that despite the many past presidents and heads of state the North was able to produce, yet the region remains under developed.
Participants during the ANA conference, also observed that there is the need for new North to be visualized and realized.
“The region is also experiencing worsening activities of insurgents, bandits, kidnappers and armed robbers and the bad situation has affected the region’s farming activities negatively,” the communique said.
Also among the many observations, is the worrying situation of unending clashes between farmers and herders the region is witnessing.
ANA conceptual frame work is embedded in the group’s goal of promoting and bargaining some critical political positions for the North that will enable the rapid growth and development of the region in the governance and service structure of Nigeria, post 2023 general elections.
The Coordinator, Senator Ahmad Abubakar Mo-Allahyidi said setting an agenda for the continuing political relevance of the North in Nigeria’s governance, to harmonize and project Northern positions on critical national issues, to protect Northern interests in the Nigerian political discourse and evolution, are some of the aims and objectives.
Abubakar revealed that the communique of the two-day conference outlined challenges and problems of Northern extraction as pervasive abject poverty across the region has fuelled insecurity, resulting to high number of out-of-school children.
He said high rate of unemployment, worsened by the closure of many industries and banks that had existed in the region in the recent past, also contributes to its woes.
Other problems they unraveled is the neglect of girl-child education, high incidence of drug abuse, decline of agricultural activities due to insurgency, banditry, kidnapping and incessant clashes between farmers and herders, are few among many challenges bedeviling the region.
The group in their communique, recommended that skills acquisition centres should be established across the region to wade off poverty, as well as provision of improved varieties of seeds and seedlings through farmers associations to serve as modernized agricultural practices in the region.