Sokoto State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Mukhtari Shehu Shagari
By Mohammed Aminu
Sokoto State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Mukhtari Shehu Shagari, has cautioned political leaders scheming for power ahead of the 2015 presidential election to refrain from making unguarded utterances capable of overheating the polity.
Shagari made the call yesterday, during an interview with THISDAY at his residence in Sokoto.
He stressed that it was premature for some political leaders to be issuing threats and scheming for power ahead of 2015, saying it would distract the government from meeting the yearnings of the people.
According to him, politics entails service to the people and not about threats, hence the need for both northern and southern political leaders to refrain from making unguarded utterances capable of plunging the country into chaos.
“Politics is not about threats, it is about fairness and service to the people. So, political leaders should stop making unguarded statements ahead of 2015.
“In fact, It is premature for political leaders to start scheming for 2015. For me, I think it is still far away and I will not want to talk about it when we were just sworn in 10 months ago for a second term. What I am focused on is how to help my governor fulfill the promise made to the people of Sokoto,” Shagari said.
He described as political the recent report by National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) which rated Sokoto as the poorest state in the country.
The deputy governor stated that the negative classification of Sokoto by NBS would not deter the state government from its activities aimed at improving the lots of the people.
He claimed that the negative publicity being given to Sokoto State was due to the progress it made against the expectations of some political enemies.
Shagari explained that Governor Aliyu Wamakko empowered thousands of youths in the state and provided a conducive atmosphere for business to thrive.
He pointed out that over 70 per cent of the population engage in irrigation farming all year round producing water melon, cassava, beans, tomatoes and onions.
“As you aware in the past, youths used to travel to places like Lagos, Enugu and other southern states in search of means of livelihood but today they stay in their communities.
“I remember about four years ago, when about 100 hajj seats were allocated to Shagari local government area, people hardly had money to pay for the seats but during the last 2012 Hajj, 300 hajj seats were allocated to Shagari council and we had more than 600 people ready to pay for the seats,” he said.
He identified corruption as a great impediment to the nation’s progress, adding, “if we are able to bring down corruption, then our economy will improve.
He commended the Federal Government for the ongoing rehabilitation of railways, particularly the inauguration of the Lagos-Kano track, saying it was a good development for the country.