North ready to negotiate 2015 presidency —Aliyu

THE Governor of Niger State and Chairman Northern States Governor’s Forum,  Babangida Aliyu, on Sunday said the Northern part of the country would negotiate with those seeking to be elected as the nation’s president in a bid to safeguard the region’s interests.

He made the remark during the inauguration of the office complex for federal workers in Enagi, headquarters of Edati Local Government in Niger State, stressing that the North was prepared to follow whoever was elected president in 2015.

Aliyu denied advocating that only northern candidates should clinch the presidency, but stressed that the need for the promises made to the region were fulfilled.

He said, “Some people, very few of them, are holding nocturnal meetings, that they are telling President Goodluck Jonathan that they are only supporters of Jonathan. We are the supporters of the constitution of Nigeria. Whosoever gets the power, we are in support of him but we are saying this time around in 2015, we will negotiate.

“We will support whoever gets this power, but we will ask for the fulfillment of the promises to our people; that is all we are saying and some people want to cash in on this.”

He warned that the state would not accept the introduction of religion into its body polity.

He said, “Here in Niger, we do not play the politics of religion as such attitude would negate the development drive of the state and the country at large.”

Aliyu denied that the state government tampered with local government allocations.

He said, “The state government does not interfere with the allocation of funds to the council, as some of the councils had embarked on meaningful projects that touch lives of their people. Edati Local Government Chairman, Alhaji Isah Kantigi, has proved that by the projects executed today.”

The governor promised to embark on a tour of local governments beginning from August to inspect projects being executed by the councils in preparation for the LG elections in 2014.

Kantigi said he had slashed the council overhead by 50 per cent to enable the council to fund the N260m projects, which include offices for federal staff deployed in the area, magistrate’s court and 15 kilometres road project.

Source: Punch

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