Arewa youths under the aegis of the Northern Emancipation Network (NEN) has urged those parading themselves as elders of the region to reclaim their lost statesmanship by advising the younger generations correctly instead of their present attempt to manipulate the thinking of the youths for their personal gains.
In a statement issued yesterday in Abuja by group’s coordinator, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, he said that those who have constituted themselves as northern elders were in many ways directly responsible for the numerous challenges facing the region.
Suleiman recalled that all the people speaking as elders were at various times in positions of influence which they used for self-serving purposes instead of the overall development of the North.
He said: “As though just waking from a deep sleep, these people are now coming to dictate to the North whom to vote for between Alhaji Atiku Atiku and President Muhammadu Buhari without first telling the children the truth regarding how they got the region to this sorry situation.
“They all held positions of influence at various times, but used the positions for personal material acquisition and perpetration while the region remains the most backward in all aspects.
“They should begin by explaining why the North is now the bastion of poverty, illiteracy, insecurity and everything that make life difficult for a people after it has held power for most of Nigeria’s independent existence.
“These same people have enjoyed everything the North had to offer since pre-Independence but concentrated those opportunities in monopolising the total available activity in the region for their personal benefits to the detriment of the larger population.
“Now that they have been schemed out by time and changing circumstances and posterity threatening to call them to account for their past bankruptcy, they are still bent on further confusing the already dicey situation in the region which they brought about,” he said.
Suleiman declared that the choice before northerners in 2019 is critical and requires careful assessment as it has to do with the ultimate survival of the region or its eventual perpetration of strategies aimed at diminishing the viability of the North and rendering it incapable of standing on its own two feet and competing favourably with other parts of the country.
The group therefore charged “northerners to keep in mind that the resurgence and persistence of separatist agitations, especially by the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and its ilk represent a much wider conspiracy to divide Nigeria and bring the North down on its knees by incapacitation and balkanisation.
“The choice is therefore one that has to do with placing the fate of the North to the mercy of persons who have remained openly and unapologetically contemptuous of northern values like Peter Obi, Fani-Kayode, Reno Omokri and co.
“Northerners should therefore discount the position of the so-called elders and know that in the unfolding political chess game, it is essential that the North anticipates and checks the manoeuvres of its detractors and their internal collaborators in all possible and likely scenarios,” Suleiman said.
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