- The leadership of the the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) has called on the northern Nigerian students to be actively involved in politics
- The coalition urged the students to ensure greedy, selfish and unpatriotic leaders are not returned to office in 2023
- Shehu Dalhatu, the chairman at the Maitama Sule leadership lecture series, described the students as custodians of the future
Gumel Jigawa - The northern Nigerian students in the higher institutions have been asked to mobilise to replace all manifestations of bad leadership that have held the country to ransom for the past 20 years.
Legit.ng reports that the charge was given on Wednesday, November 3, at the Maitama Sule leadership lecture series organised by the students' wing of the Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) at the College of Education, Gumel Jigawa state.
The chairman of the event, Alhaji Shehu Dalhatu, charged the students as custodians of the future to work to replace the bad leaders who have monopolised the total available activity in the country since 1999.
Dalhat noted that the majority of those in leadership positions in local government councils and state assemblies are below the age of 40 and wondered why students in the same age bracket would not rise to check their excesses.
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"Councillors and state assembly members are your contemporaries below the age of 40 and they are the ones that rule Nigeria directly being closer to the communities. You must create a network of students to checkmate bad leadership and call out bad leaders who only remember the people when they need votes.
"You are the ones used to conduct a national census, conduct voter registration but used to put bad leadership in place. Rise to take control of your destiny and future, remember that every revolution throughout history begins with students."
Reminding the students that they are the natural and legitimate claimants to the task of shaping the destiny of the society, Dalhat said the present crop of aged leaders are fast passing out.
He warned that politicians, most of whom are unscrupulous, tend to manipulate the cleavages of religion and ethnicity to cause mass disaffection and bring about sharp divisions in society for their quest for power and wealth.
On his part, the keynote speaker, Saidu Ahmed Dukawa, noted that to underscore the importance of students' vigilance over the direction the country is headed, statistics have shown the rise in students enrollment from 2000 in 1999 to more than 2million in 2020.
"We must take charge of our own affairs by identifying ourselves and knowing where we are headed. To be able to take control, we must understand the nature of the polity by participating in the political process.
"We must understand the nature of our decaying politics and economy and learn trades and skills that will rebuild their foundations. Acquire quality and honest education of all kinds, because you cannot lead if you are both a cheat and a glorified illiterate. Knowledge is the foundation of good leadership."
Saminu Umar, who was the main presenter, lamented that at no time has free and credible elections ever been conducted in Nigeria by what he referred to as lying political elite who manipulate religion, ethnicity and regional sentiments to distort the minds of the electorate.
He recounted that religious and ethnic bigots have exploited cleavages of religious, ethnic and regional nature to influence the average impregnable minds to get them to elect people whom they would otherwise not vote.
He listed the consequences of these negative sentiments to include the devastation of democratic processes, the collapse of public institutions, high-level tolerance of corrupt practices and lack of trust for leaders.
"And the end price of weak democracy and poor governance include general insecurity, large scale poverty, widening unemployment, eminent hunger and starvation and threats to national unity."
To check this, he said, students in higher institutions should begin by taking the sincere decisions to making a difference in putting Nigeria's democracy into good shape by contesting and sponsoring, credible, young, able and capable candidates.
In their separate remarks, Comrades Salisu Mohammed and Isa Tijjani noted that so far, only the CNG has taken the commendable step of involving every significant component of northern society including the intelligentsia, community leaders, and students in higher institutions in the task of rescuing the north from the margins of decadence, decay and irrelevance.
Personalities at the event included the Provost of the College, traditional rulers, and various shades of academics and community leaders.
Northern groups reply southern governors ahead of 2023
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that the CNG told southern governors in Nigeria that ahead of the 2023 presidential election they are ready to support any candidate that can foster unity and peace in the country.
It was reported that the CNG added that it is willing to accept any competent candidate with laudable track records irrespective of tribe and gender.
CNG made this point clear in a fresh statement released by its spokesman, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, on Tuesday, July 6.