President Muhammadu Buhari Monday had separate close-door meetings with three northern governors at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
The governors are Ibrahim Gaidam of Yobe State, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State and Abubakar Badaru of Jigawa State.
Speaking to State House correspondents after the meeting, Ibrahim Gaidam of Yobe State said he briefed the President on the situation of the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and other issues in the state.
He said the state is currently faced with the challenge of reintegrating insurgency victims and reconstructing areas destroyed in the heat of the Boko Haram attacks.
He said the state was seeking federal government’s assistance in the area of reconstruction and rehabilitation of some infrastructure destroyed by the terrorists.
“In terms of reconstruction, rehabilitation, although there is the Presidential Committee in the North East, they are doing their best but they need to do more. That is what I told Mr. President. Some of our people lost their livelihood, their farms, homes, etc.
“They need to be given some amount of money or the Federal Government through the Presidential Committee may assist them to reconstruct or rebuild their houses so that they can start their normal lives,” he said.
Asked how much support has the Presidential initiative so far given, the governor said: “We have not received a kobo in terms of cash but in terms of materials, food and non food items, we have been receiving a lot which I cannot tell you precisely in a quantified form here, we have received enough. But during the last administration, Yobe State took care of the Joint Task Force which is a combination of the military, the SSS, the Police, the Mobile Police who were carrying out the war against the insurgency. We even paid their allowances, all their logistical needs including patrol vehicles.”
Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal of Sokoto State said he briefed the President on developments arising from the recent meeting between Northern Governors and their Southern counterparts and the feasibility of searching for oil and gas in the Sokoto Basin.
He said the state has enough gas deposits which if harnessed could address the electricity supply challenges.
He said: “I came to see our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari and we had discussion on quite a number of issues, of specific mention is the issue is the general well-being of the country, security situation of the country. I am sure you are aware that recently we were in the South East, as governors from the north went to interact with our brothers in the south east and South South and particularly people of the North residing there so there was a need for a feedback.
“Also we have discussed with the President, if you remember very well recently, I was personally at the NNPC towers where we engaged the GMD of the NNPC on possible oil exploration in the Sokoto basin and I have had cause to brief the president on that particular interaction.
“There is a need for the federal government to continue to support that endeavour which I believe will help in more provision of oil and gas which we believe is very much in abundance in this basin but also in bringing about agricultural revolution in that area. If you have gas it will support the power supply which will in turn enhance and influence agro- allied industries that are likely to come on board and also have a positive impact economically on the lives and well-being of the people that are along the basin. These are some of the issues we discussed with Mr. President.”
On his part, Abubakar Badaru of Jigawa State said he discussed issues on agriculture with the President.
The governor also debunked reports that lawmakers in the state were planning to impeach him. (Blueprint)