The Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, has said that Nigeria is struggling to make progress because the North is backward as it struggles with many problems including, poverty, illiteracy, insecurity, and religious intolerance.
The Islamic leader who said the north of today is a far departure from what the late Premier of the North and Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello planned for the region, said until the North is able to overcome its many challenges, Nigeria will continue to suffer.
The Sultan stated this in his remarks at the first session of the 50th-anniversary celebration of the Arewa House in Kaduna.
He challenged northern leaders to work hard in creating a region that will project the vision of the late Premier.
“The north of today is not the same north Sardauna wanted to see or had dreamt about. It’s not the same north that our children now roam the streets, begging for food in the name of Almajiranci. It is not the same north in which Sardauna wanted all our girls to go to school and he was very passionate about girl child education. It is not the north that he has built and left a very solid foundation and it is now left for our politicians to build on that foundation.
“Bring everyone together irrespective of tribe and religion, that was what Sardauna did, that was the Sardauna we knew as children and we are still trying to copy him but we are not yet there”. Sultan said.
He added that the people must work together to develop the north, stressing that when the north develops, it is Nigeria that is developing.
He described the recent looting and destructions of government and private assets by hoodlums as wickedness while commending northern youths for exercising restrain.
The Sultan emphasised that poverty should not be used as an excuse to plunder the nation’s assets, adding, “we know there is poverty but poverty should not be used for wickedness because what happened in the last couple of days is wickedness by some disgruntled hoodlums and I think it is important to condemn it loud and clear.