Unlike in Borno and Adamawa states where only 30 memoranda were submitted, the Presidential Advisory Committee on National dialogue has received over four hundred (400) memoranda from Bauchi, Gombe and Taraba state governments, individuals, groups, traditional councils, Non Governmental Organizations, women societies, as well as youth and religious organizations.
The committee had commenced a tour of the six geo-political zones recently and was in Bauchi state to receive suggestions from individuals, groups and organizations within the North-East zone to work out modalities for the success of the conference.
Items that topped the submissions were security of the country with emphasis on the role of Nigeria Police, the unity of the country, local government autonomy, resource control, indigent/settler issue, state creation, and the need to maintain the indivisibility of Nigeria dominating discussions at the committee’s sitting.
Also, the fear of minority groups being dominate by the majority groups was put in focus and the urgent need for boundary adjustment of states and local government areas in order to reduce cases of boundary disputes in the country.
Most presenters insisted that the time of the conference should not be more than six months from the day President Goodluck Jonathan would inaugurate the conference, so as the 2015 campaigns doesn’t interfere with the conference.
There was also the need to revisit names of certain states and local government created through military fiat which didn’t reflect the ethnic identity of the people of those states and local government, with special emphases on Adamawa state.
On the mood of selecting the delegates, most of the presenters warned that government should select delegates to the conference but that the delegates should be elected at the ward and local government levels, so as to avoid government hijacking the conference.
According to some of the presenters, “Outcome of the conference should be subjected to a referendum in order to allow for wider participation”. They equally expressed doubt that the outcome of the National Conference may not see the light of the day like previous exercises, lamenting that huge resources and people’s time were wasted.
The women society however, advocated for adequate representation by female delegates as women’s views are very crucial in discussing the unity and progress of the country, and called for the inclusion of the 35 per cent affirmative action in the constitution.
Meanwhile, the Tindeyatso women association Ussa has advocated for both Christians and Muslim men to be allowed to marry four wives to reduce rate of prostitution among young ladies.
Category: Bauchi State News