A REMARK BY TH SOUTHERN KADUNA PEOPLE’S UNINON NATIONAL YOUTH WING LEADER AT THE 2017 SOKAPU YOUTH SUMIT.
It gives me great pleasure to stand as your servant at a moment like this to thank you for creating time out of the engaging yuletide period to be here with us and also welcome you all to the SOKAPU Youth Wing Summit here in Kafanchan. On a sad note, I will like to take a moment to regret the untimely dead of our kinsmen as a result of the unprovoked killings and attack on innocent citizens by insurgent herdsmen in Nindem Village, Godogodo Chiefdom on 23rd December, 2017 and another incidence reminiscent to Goska attack on Christmas eve in Ungwan Mailafiya Gwong Chiefdom all in Jama’a Local government. While we mourn with both the immediate family and communities of the victims; we demand that those that are constitutionally saddled with the responsibility of protecting us to either uphold their oath of office or resign for negligence.
This year’s summit is uniquely significant to us all as it comes at one of our most challenging times as a people. Over the past couple of years we have been insulted, manipulated, stereotyped, abandoned, maimed and killed; this is notwithstanding the many years of political, economic and social subjugation. However, come 2018 we know, our voice, cries and agitations shall be amplified to demand a practical approach and response to solving some of these challenges. In 2018, the onus will be on us, the youth, to prepare and prove our worth as the future and defenders of Southern Kaduna, by unanimously putting together a political agenda regardless of our party affiliation that will determine our political future. This indeed makes this august summit symbolic, timely and a necessity.
From our wide stakeholder’s consultations, political participation has been identified as top of the list, being one of the most non-violent approaches to addressing our common challenges.
This approach will go a long way in addressing the challenges of the gory events of our recent past years. Some of the challenging events include but not limited to persistent attempt at sacking us from our ancestral home, neglect of internally displaced persons, economic stagnation, closing down of academic institutions (recently re-opened), politically motivated persecution using the courts, poor representation by some of our legislators and political exclusion. This has led thousands of our kinsmen to a life of bitterness, hardship, poverty and despondency. To this we say enough is enough!
However, we must remember that the Pharaoh’s furnace of affliction was actually made to destroy the Jews, but ironically, it prepared them and fast tracked the possession of the Promised Land. Also, Hitler’s Concentration Camp was built with the sole purpose to wipe out the Jews from the face of the Earth, but however it turned out to be the impetus for the creation of the nation of Israel in 1948. We too have some lessons to go home with in the face of our present predicament; and this will be the necessity to reinforce our unity, strengthen our strategies, and execute our political agenda for the liberation of our region.
Going forward, for political expediency, we cannot continue being an Island, but rather we need to expand the scope of our political participation by building networks outside this region. Our starting point is to strengthen our relationship with our brothers and sisters in the Middle-belt, who we share similar challenges and aspirations. Together under a common purpose we can shape future elections and actualize our desire for restructuring and the creation of our own State of Gurara.
As a people, we cannot shy away from the reality that our nonchalant attitude towards political participation and politics of sycophancy (selling our loyalty to the highest bidder) that has held us captive. Regardless of our large population, majority of who are politically inactive, we have been subjugated due to the skewed distribution of polling units and wards to our political disadvantage. It is my belief that the presentation by the amiable Hon Dr. Timothy Gandu will further highlight the political quagmire before us. Another political intrusion that should be of great concern to us is that of the illegal boundary adjustment. Recently the governor of kaduna state has fraudulently carved Ladduga plitically and administratively from Zangon Kataf local government to Kachia local government in total disregard to the laws, and illegal registration is ongoing, while our communities with large voting but unregistered population are being deliberately frustrated.
It is unfortunate that our legislators are bench warmers, no one can raise his voice against such illegality, they even worsen our situation. The pass bills that placed heavy burden on our destiny within hours.
We are here today gathered not to exchange pleasantries and engage in cheap talk, but to brainstorm and adopt new approaches that will address our political predicaments and position our youth toward upward mobility in politics. Therefore, today we are here to commission the Southern Kaduna Youth Project to accelerate our political participation, reactivate our voting power and strengthen our political approaches. This event has set the ball rolling, as we will from here embark on visiting the 12 Local Governments under Southern Kaduna umbrella to sensitize and mobilize our unregistered brothers and sisters to the nearest voters’ registration Centres to get their PVCs. Also, engage in another round of door-to-door voters’ education to make our people see the need to come out in mass and vote credible candidates that recognize our value as a people come 2019 general elections. Let me categorically restate here that 2019 will not be business as usual.
The project before us is indeed huge and capital intensive, we must all arise and take the bull by the horn and reclaim our lost glory. As the ever vibrant youth of Southern Kaduna we cannot be afford to be nonchalant while our future is under threat, but must define and actualize our common purpose and aspiration of the Southern Kaduna of our dream.
At this juncture, I will want to appreciate the support we have received so far from Southern Kaduna Sons and Daughters, due to your unwavering believe in us as a union and our activities. Your sacrifices for the land will never go unnoticed and unrewarded.
We solicit for your continuous support in this patriotic but difficult journey more than ever and encourage that you should never get tired of sacrificing for the journey to the Promised Land.
I appreciate you all for coming and for your listening pleasure.
God bless Southern Kaduna,
God bless Kaduna State,
God bless the Middle-Belt,
God Bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.