The North which is a larger part of
Nigeria comprising the north east, north
west and north central has remained
in perpetual poverty since after the
administration of Sardauna of Sokoto
and Tafawa Balewa, who due to their
fear of God, patriotism, justice, love for
their people, prudence, transparency
and accountability have remained the
best and the most incorruptible leaders
Nigeria and particularly the north ever
had. Since then what we have been
getting for administrators are mere
rulers and not leaders. Rulers who lack
the initiative to generate revenue from
their area of jurisdiction; think out of
the box to provide aid for the weak and
the vulnerable, improve agricultural
practices and open up industries that
would mop up almost all the teeming
unemployed and who lack the will
power to enlighten and sensitize its
teaming population on the right values
that can move the region forward
towards a greater height.
Abacha, Shagari, Yakubu Gowon and
Babangida all led this country at various
times but never left much indelible
mark or affected the lives of the teaming
population of the north positively.
Among all the regimes, it is only the rich
that grew richer, but their influence only
festered in the political arena. Murtala
Muhammed, Muhammad Buhari and
Umar Musa Yar’adua all had good
intentions during their past regimes,
but their administrations were untimely
truncated by unfortunate incidents
(death and coup de tat).
The governors and ministers and
even top ranking civil servants from
the north hardly had anything much to
offer to the people; they rather stash the
accumulated monies amassed (legally
or illegally) to their families and cronies
immediate needs and accumulate assets
all over the place (both at home and
abroad), and going on foreign trips in
order to prove their grandeur status in
the society. Such topnotch like the former
national security adviser is a peculiar
example of those who have cheated
Nigeria and the North in particular, but
we have so many of them.
Winning of the 2015 election by
president Muhammadu Buhari did not
come by accident, it is another divine
opportunity to rebuild the country
especially the North economically,
administratively, socially and in value
The most annoying and irritating
value system among Northerners that
keep the region perpetually backward
include the following: Bad governance:
Leadership is service not personal
vanity or personal aggrandisement of
self and cronies and not bothering about
the fate of the poor, uneducated and
unemployed in their midst. Not minding
the fact that occupying a political or
public post is to improve the condition
of lives of the people and not personal
aggrandisement; the major reason why the
North has remained backwards.
Lack of patriotism on the side of the
elite is a key factor. Lack of focus in
contributing their quota towards the
upliftment of the status of their brothers
and sisters down in the North through job
creation and consequently wealth creation
(not necessarily through white collar jobs).
Many politicians had opportunities of
economically revitalizing their region but
subconsciously failed to do so.
Engaging in acts of corruption such
as stealing public funds and cutting
corners by our kith and kin, thereby
impoverishing the rest of us. The culture
of Maula (psychophancy) and Almajiri
system: The wrongly propagated norm
of begging and hero worship is rampant
among poor Northerners who prefer to
beg for easy money from the rich, instead
of working hard to earn a living.
The main reason why rich Northerners
steal is in order to meet up with the
numerous demands of their relatives and
cronies. That is why the ban on street
begging by Kaduna state governor Mallam
Nasir El-rufai is a good step in the right
Misconception of Western education:
As advocated by half-baked religious
teachers, many Northerners think that
western education especially for the girlchild
is a waste of resources because it ends
in the kitchen. They forget that western
and religious education will impact
positively every sphere of her endeavour
(either business or marital life). This
mentality reflects the startling revelation
that over “70% of North-western women
aged 15-49 are uneducated”.
This was an assertion made by a
renowned gynaecologist Professor Hadiza
Galadanci at a workshop in Kano. She
affirmed that that makes the regions the
biggest with uneducated women in the
country. So if women are an asset to a
nation I am sure Northern women are not
among, with this level of illiteracy. And
when women who are the mentors of the
children are not educated, you can imagine
the ripple and multiplier effect this will
have on the socio-economic development
of the region and the nation at large.
Laziess and lack of initiatives: A typical
Northerner is lazy, lacks initiative and
likes to reap where he has not sown: they
never try to borrow a leaf from the Igbo’s
who are known for their doggedness and
They have forgotten that you can only be
rich by what you have worked for not the
peanuts that are loathingly thrown at them
by the supposedly rich in the society who
never show the poor how to make money.
(Stop giving them the fish show them how
to fish) so that they can be independent
and not pests, as some rich men want the
poor to be.
Entrenchment of wron values and
beliefs: Upholding wrong values and
beliefs by Northerners i.e. (a) If a woman
is well educated, she will go wild and
refuse to respect her husband.
(b) If a woman is vying for a political
Street beggars
They have
forgotten that you
can only be rich
by what you have
worked for and
not the peanuts
that are loathingly
thrown at them
by the supposedly
rich in the society
who never show
the poor how to
succeed in life
The state of underdevelopment in the north has been giving many sons and daughters of the region concerns. As Nigeria enters New Year today,
RABIAH LABARAN examines the problems and the way out
position and goes for late evening
meetings, she must be seeping her
way through to get to the position. (c)
Women are not meant to lead they are
meant to be led, neither are they to
be wealthy, wealth it is the exclusive
preserve of men. (d) Your generosity
is measured by the number of people
you can feed on a daily basis, or the
number of people who depend on you
for their livelihood (even if you have to
steal to meet-up with the demands. (e)
If you are highly placed in the society
and people don’t gather in front of your
house or you don’t share money, that
means that you are “eating alone”.
The poor believe that every rich
person is a thief or must be engaged
in dubious acts. (f) If you are strong
willed, principled and incorruptible,
people call you a wicked person, while
if you are the opposite they call you a
good person and celebrate you.
All these superstitious beliefs are
what have kept the North behind.
Before I end this article, let me offer my
unreserved advice to our dear president,
president Muhammadu Buhari .The
proposed N5000 should be channelled
appropriately to the elderly who are no
longer strong and employable and also
the physically challenged.
While the teeming unemployed
Nigerians could be made active through
giving them free skill acquisition
trainings and providing ready markets
for their goods and services. Secondly,
teeming unemployed persons could
be actively engaged on federal and
state owned farms and industries for a
monthly pay.
Thirdly a tin of milk per child in
our primary schools is good enough
for the anticipated school feeding
program. Fourthly, curbing corruption
in the public service by de-emphasizing
certificates and emphasizing expertise
and output will also go a long way in
improving productivity in the public
sector. Fifthly, corrupt persons or those
who have stolen public funds should
not be executed like what obtains in
some countries like china.
They should rather be made to return
the stolen funds and be made to provide
free labour on federal or state owned
farms to serve as a deterrent. Sixthly,
medical experts who operate private
hospitals should not be allowed to work
in public hospitals in order to eradicate
divided attention.
Lastly, Nigerians expect to have a
toll- free line with contact numbers that
could be used to reach the president to
offer useful advise and suggestions that
would move the country forward, since
many Nigerians are passionate about
the change process.

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