THAT UNGUARDED MISSILE AGAINST WAMAKKO
Since the emergence of the administration of Alhaji Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko (Sarkin Yamman Wamakko) as governor of Sokoto State, it has been dogged by irritant opposition from some people who would prefer sustenance of rubbishing the cherished values of the Seat of Caliphate.
Series of court cases trailed the administration in avowed stance of making the state ungovernable or to remove the governor by all means. Unfortunately, being a dexterous grassroots mobiliser, Almighty Allah gave him victory at every occasion. Scaling the bumps deliberately contrived by enemies became a resolve that resulted in articulation of so many development projects by the administration.
Though the administration came into existence during the global economic meltdown all projects embarked upon were steadily on course. The strategic flyover bridge at the traffic chaotic intersection of Ahmadu Bello Way, Abdullahi Fodio Road, Maiduguri Road and Kano Road constructed at a cost of N1.6 billion is now complete and will soon be commissioned. So, it is naÃ¯ve of Harande Umar Guiwa, in his article in the Weekly Trust of October 29, 2011 page 39, to insinuate abandonment of projects in Sokoto State.
The Sokoto State University, when it was conceived by this administration, faced opposition as irrelevant, but it is now obvious that it is a project worthwhile to absorb the increasing number of candidates from Sokoto State seeking university education as a result of particular attention given to education sector by the Wamakko's administration. Two faculties are almost completed to admit the first intake for the 2011/2012 academic session. A university as desideratum for human capital development is capital-intensive venture.
The administration renovated dilapidated schools across the state. It also constructed new ones. The schools have been well-equipped to fast track processes of teaching and learning. Teachers are being motivated to give their best. The administration recruited more teachers to complement the existing ones. Serious campaigns were mounted for education development of the state, particularly girl-child education. Consequently, there is tremendous upsurge in enrollment of boys and girls in schools.
The administration, through the Department of Higher Education, crafted a programme that ensured extra-mural classes for students deficient at ordinary level of education to make up for admission to tertiary institutions. Their NECO and WAEC forms were funded by the government. The administration of Governor Wamakko has completed a good number of rural roads, rural electricity and rural water facilities.
It's an administration that strongly believes in interior development as effective means of stemming the tide of urban migration, and most importantly to encourage the establishment of cottage industries to generate employment for rural dwellers. Farmers have access to farm inputs distributed equitably in contrast to insinuations of like of Guiwa. Earth dams were constructed in strategic locations to assist farmers to increase output. Grazing reserves were created and aggressively sustained for animal fodder that will increase supply of beef not only to Sokoto State but also the entire country.
The administration has completed the Mana housing estates as well as in Bado Quarters. These houses have been allocated to civil servants on owner/occupier arrangement. Houses in Yauri have also been given to civil servants on same terms. These are some of the measures aimed at motivating the civil servants. The distribution of 1, 000 cars to senior civil servants was done in a transparent manner as one of the motivational dynamics of this administration. Beneficiaries can attest that it is the most humane gesture that eased means and amount of payment. Junior officers received similar treatment in loans. It is something done to Sokoto State people and should not elicit envy of idle gossips.
The Independent Power Project and the College of Agriculture are projects dear to the administration. It conceived them for the benefit of the people. It is, therefore, committed to their completion. Payments are made according to available funds. No responsible administration can engage in flagrant commitment and spending that would enslave its people.
Quite a number of programmes were lined up to provide gainful employment to the youths of Sokoto State. The skills acquisition is one of them.
Youths are trained in trades and on completion government provides start up capital. The aggressive measures in education development are aimed at the youth. Sporting industry is now a veritable tool of engaging the youth to meaningful vocation. The state government has shown most enthusiasm in development of sports. An aphorism that one can take a horse to the river but can never force it to drink is still extant. Government has, by all means, provided latitude to absorb the youths into gainful employment. Parents, including Harande, should pick up the gauntlet.
Idle youths anywhere are nuisance, as they constitute security risk. They overstretch security measures of any government and security agencies. The administration of Governor Wamakko has consistently strived to maintain security in the state to sustain the sacred nature of Sokoto as a peaceful state. Peace is a panacea for development and Sokoto needs security of life and property. Governor Wamakko, in collaboration with Sultan Muhammad Sa'ad Abubakar and the security agencies in the state, has continued to ensure peaceful co-existence of Sokoto people irrespective of political affiliation or race.
Every responsible person frowns at the menace of drug abuse by youth. It is a monster that needs everybody's cooperation tame. Guiwa should be a good citizen to float an NGO against drug abuse. Sure, he will receive the backing of responsible citizens and Governor Wamakko, as usual, will lend immense assistance to him. Leadership is a collective effort.
• Umar is President, Sokoto Liberal Democrats Media Foundation (SOLID) [email protected] my HTC