Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State
By Nengi David
As groups continue to rally support for Kogi State governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello to vie for the exalted seat of the presidency in 2023, a civil society group, Guardians of Democracy and Development (GDD) has warned Nigerians to be retrospect about such a choice saying his antecedence as governor fell short of expectations.
The CSO in a statement signed by its convener, Danesi Momoh Prince particularly frowned at the recent distribution of wheelbarrow and shovels to the youth in the state by the governor describing the action as not only archaic but an insult on the sensibility of the people.
Consequently, the group urged Nigerians to be thorough in assessing people who aspire for public office rather than basing their decisions on mundane issues such as age, religion and tribe amongst others.
According to the CSO, Nigeria has attained a height it can no longer afford mediocre leadership explaining that the social and infrastructural deficit requires someone who is scientific in his reasoning and approach to governance.
“Majority of Nigerians are not satisfied with the state of affairs in the country and this shortfall is in all spheres of the nation’s life. What this entails is that we have not taken seriously the processes of selecting our leaders. This is why as CSO, we have taken it upon ourselves to mobilise Nigerians to get involved in the leadership selection process.
“One of the ways of doing this is to speak against those who are eminently not qualified to occupy leadership positions. A governor who still sees wheelbarrow and shovels as empowerment implements certainly has nothing desirable to offer than returning the country to the stone age era.
“At a time many state governors in the country are setting up highly technical institutions or sponsoring youths abroad for ICT related courses such as software engineering, animation, video editing and graphics amongst others and the beneficiaries of such overseas training are not only empowered, but also train and empower others, we have a governor who still promotes wheelbarrow pushing contrary to to building a modern economy.
“Kogi state is an agrarian state quite alright, but other state governors are empowering their youth elsewhere with grants and modern farm implements to venture into large scale mechanised farming not wheel barrows. Such a way of thinking does not speak well of somebody who wants to be president of a country in the 21st century.
“Recall too that it took Yahaya Bello for forever to settle staff salaries when he resumed office despite grants made available by the federal government to that effect. That singular act made Kogi state a laughing stock in the country. Governor Bello has gone a step further to redicule the state again with another ridiculous programme of youth empowerment. A man who is insensitive to the plight of the people, who has reduced Kogi youths to people only fit for wheel barrow pushing and manual labour can’t make a good president,’ the group added.
“While we acknowledge the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari, we make bold to say Nigeria deserves someone who will do better not one who is oblivious of the fact that machines have taken over strenuous jobs hitherto done manually”.