By KATO P. LADAN, Kaduna
In a dramatic contrast to accusing statements credited to the APC against Governor Bello Matawalle, the Nigerian Governors Forum has paid him a commendation visit today, expressing its total support to his anti-banditry campaign in the North-west Zone.
This was contained in a statement signed by his Special Adviser Public Enlightenment, Media and Communications, Zailani Bappa.
Leading a 4-man delegation to the Governor who met him at the Government Lodge, Maitama, Abuja, the forum Chairman, Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, said the forum was completely in support of the efforts being made by Governor Bello Matawalle in the fight against banditry and other criminality in Zamfara State and the North-west at large.
“We note your single-mindedness in this pursuit and we also note the positive results being recorded by your approach in the fight against the menace of banditry in your state and the North-west as a whole”, Governor Fayemi noted with delight.
“all the Nigerian Governors stand as one in your support at this hour in your total commitment to the liberation of our people from the activities of these criminals in your state and the region”, the Governors’ Forum chairman said.
“whatever we can do to assist, we shall do it. We are here to encourage you to do more and we are solidly behind you”, Governor Fayemi told Matawalle. “we pray that the year 2021 will be the year of peace and by the grace of God, peace we shall have”, the Forum Chairman prayed.
He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for the support he is rendering in the fight against banditry, especially the supply of Special forces to Zamfara State. He also on behalf of the Governors, commiserate with Governor Matawalle over the lives lost in the state as a result of the activities of bandits in the state.
Responding, Governor Bello Mohammed said he was elated and encouraged by the visit which will serve as an elixir for his renewed efforts to do more so that his people can sleep with their two eyes closed.
“no amount of discouragement can deter me from doing what is right to salvage my people from the menace of banditry and other criminality”, Governor Matawalle assured.
He noted with utter dismay that after sleepless nights he spent working hard to assist in the release of Kankara children, a Spokesman of the All Progressive Congress accused him of harbouring bandits who terrorise his neighbours.
“I intended to sue in this case, but for the intervention of my brother, the Yobe state Governor Alhaji Mai Mala Buni, who assured me the officer will be reprimanded for such a callous statement. I am waiting to see the action that the APC will take since it has dissociated itself from the statement”, Governor Matawalle spoke.
He commended the Governors Forum for the encouragement and financial support to the victims of banditry in the state. He also commended President Muhammadu Buhari for the support he has always rendered to him in the fight against banditry in the state.
The Chairman of the Governors Forum team comprises of himself, the Governors of Jigawa, Kebbi and Sokoto states (with Sokoto State Governor in absentia), Alhaji Mohammed Badaru Abubakar, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu and Aminu WaziriTambuwal respectively.