Northern leaders, businessmen and elite have been slammed for not keying into the economic diversification programme of Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari.
Commissioner of Solid Minerals, Sokoto State, Honourable Bello Mohammed expressed this while delivering a goodwill message at the maiden Northern Nigeria Solid Minerals and Workshop, which is ongoing in Kaduna.
According to him, only lip service is being paid, as there is no visible action to back all the talk revolving around diversification.
“The North is not yet ready to support President Buhari’s government. It is evident by not registering presence overwhelmingly in this hall,” he lashed out.
The commissioner said that even though the North boasts of 90 per cent of solid minerals in the country, a fact that can greatly boost its bargaining power in the union of Nigeria, it seems comfortable to be relying on revenues from the Federal Government.
He said Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal is committed to keying into the diversification programme, and has demonstrated same through the participation of him and other stakeholders who came all the way from Sokoto.
Speaking earlier in her welcome address, President of the Kaduna Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (KADCCIMA), Dr. Farida Muheeba Dankaka described the workshop and fair as timely.
She said if properly tapped into, solid minerals would not only be a major source of revenue for the country, it would greatly reduce the unemployment burden by opening up several opportunities.
Dankaka expressed optimism that at the end of the workshop/fair, the economic fortunes of Northern Nigeria would never remain the same again.
In his vote of thanks, the Chief Consultant, PROEDGE Ltd, Alhaji Tajudeen Kazeem said assured that it would be an annual event that hopes to be expanding.
He commended all the partners for making it a reality, recalling that the process of organizing the event was kick started over 12 months ago.
The 3-day workshop/fair is attracting key stakeholders from the solid minerals industry majorly from the 19 Northern states and investors from other parts of the country.
It is organized by KADCCIMA in conjunction with PROEDGE Ltd and is being held at the Kaduna International Trade Centre, Kaduna-Zaria Expressway.