Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State has appealed to Nigerian Leaders and intellectuals to confront the challenges of insecurity, poverty, unemployment and education in the country squarely in order to have a peaceful development in the near future.
He also said that it was high time Nigerians should unite and embrace each other as one family and one entity in diversity irrespective of our religions dichotomy, political, ethnic and socio economic background as a nation.
The governor stated this Friday during the 2-day national conference on the development of a Blueprint for Literature in the Northern Nigeria organized by the Northern Nigeria Writers Summit held at the Command Guest House Maimalari Cantonment Maiduguri.
He urged the people to unite as a people, as a nation by eschewing bitterness and imbibe the teachings of the various religions as well as care for the education of the people.
According to him, leaders in the past have allowed education sector of the country to collapse which informed Borno state government to Start the rebuilding process for the thousands of orphans and widows from the boko Haram insurgency including creating jobs and establishing skills acquisition scenes for them.
He said,” If not, tomorrow, if care is not taken, these people will revolt and end up consuming us. We must find a place for them to live like other people. Take care of them and cater for them by providing them with education, something doing and conducive living environment.
“Without communication, there would not have been civilization today. Since the thirteenth century, Borno literature has come to national and international limelight of the African series of literature and history as an ancestral region of knowledge,” Shettima said.
He said, that was the reason most of the works of African Literature series must be developed and retained while making an announcement of a donation of a new brand Toyota Hiace for the forum in fulfilment of his earlier promise to the forum to provide them with a mobility.
Chairman of the Occasion who is the President of Nigerian Academy of Letters, Professor Olu Obafemi, said the summit has been successful in getting governors of the northern states in sponsoring and supporting the forum while thanking Governor Shettima for taking the pains to host and sponsor the 2018 national conference of the writers summit which commemorated the 10 years anniversary of the summit.
He commended the efforts of the governor in the restoration of peace in the state while acknowledging the sacrifices of the security agencies in the liberation of communities in the state and north east.
Professor Obafemi urged the Nigerian writers and publishers to tell the world our own stories, write on our own experiences and challenges while tasking the summit to come out with a Blueprint on peace building in Borno state and north east.
He expressed hope that the state government will help in the actualization of the Blueprint that will be produced at the end of the summit, noting that, the aim of the summit was to enumerate and discuss the way forward for the country.
Chairman of the Northern Nigeria Writers Summit, Professor BM Dzukogi said the event was a convergence of Nigerian Writers from the northern region comprising of the 19 states of the federation and Abuja with an annual summit to be held every year across the north rotating among the 19 states of the northern region.
He added that the summit was to provide a virile platform for periodic discussion , articulation and propagation of the vision of a corporate Northern Nigeria in terms of its educational literary, cultural, social and political directions and channeled trough the deliberate purification of books, journals, biographies, auto biographies and literary programmes.
The Chairman said also that the summit was to ensure sustained and structured approach to matters relating to educational and literary cultural and social development of the north as well as to create a reading and learning culture through programme in educational institutions, media and elsewhere in the northern Nigeria where Governor Kashim Shettima Created an Annual Award Winning Competition for 50 Secondary School Students Literary Classroom on Poet, jokes and quotes.
He however noted that Governor Shettima will also lay foundation for the National Headquarters of the Summit in Maiduguri while a formal presentation would be made to the Northern Governors Forum, National Assembly members from the north, State House of Assembly members , traditional institutions, wives of the Governors of the northern states and the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari after the summit.
While the executive council of the forum shall also map out strategies towards the achievement of the goals enumerated at the summit, appealing to Governor Shettima to fulfil his pledge on the vehicle he promised the forum as well impress on other governors of the north in his capacity as the Chairman of the Governors forum to sponsor the summit in their states especially, Nasarawa and Kano states.
He further named Governor Shettima as the Patron of the forum urging him to inaugurate the newly constituted Board of Trustees of the Writers Summit and carry them on visits to major projects executed by the state government in the past 7 years for assessment.
SOURCE :The Nigerian Voice (local news)