BreakingNews 10/4/16: Emir of Zuru says Agitation for Biafra Uncalled For

[ Masterweb Reports: Ismail Adebayo reports ] - The Emir of Zuru, Dr. Muhammadu Sani Sami, Gomo the II, has condemned the agitation for the Republic of Biafra, saying it is uncalled for. The emir in a statement said: “We all remember the tragic by-product of the war from 1967-1970, which led to loss of lives and grounded economy in its wake”.
 
He added that it was sad to note that people were wasting their potentials. “This is unacceptable and I call on all well-meaning Nigerians to continue to demonstrate their disapproval of such agitations,” he said.
 

The emir also decried what he described as menace of the Almajiris. He called on the legislative arm of government in respective states to enact laws that would ensure restriction of the children.
 

“In the current Almajiri system of education, parents send their children far away from them, where they become exposed to all psychological and emotional vulnerabilities of life,” the emir said.
 

He urged governors of states in the North to collaborate with traditional rulers to provide a result oriented approach to the Almajiri system by integrating it into conventional government schools.
 

The emir further urged Nigerians to be patient with President Muhammadu Buhari, saying that he has the political will-power to change the socio-economic and political landscape of the country. “We do know that PMB is capable, given his track record,” he said.
 
Ismail Adebayo reports from Birnin, Kebbi State.
 
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The Emir of Zuru, Maj-General Dr. Muhammadu Sani Sami (rtd) last year in December in Zuru on the 20th anniversary on the throne as the Emir of Zuru spoke to John Ogiji on a wide range of issues. When asked about the agitation for Biafra, the emir said: "So many Nigerians have voiced out their opinion on this issue, but I don’t think there is any need for such agitations now within the country, because we have had nasty experiences in the past.

 

"We fought a civil war, for example, which claimed so many souls in Nigeria. We have leant our lessons, we know our differences, we know what to do and we had demanded the creation of states just to bring development to the people within the country.

 


"So, some of these agitations, I think, are uncalled for. Why should we go back to what we have done before? They want us go and fight another civil war again? What are we agitating for?

 

"If you have some things that the government has not done for you, come out and say it. You have your representatives both at the Senate and the House Representatives and you have your elders that you can channel your grievances through.

 


"So, so why don’t you explore those avenues? Why should you take to the street to start killing yourself for nothing?

 


"My advice is that the elders from the Southeast States should sit down and re-examine this thing, so that it doesn’t get out of hands. Let us not make another mistake again."

 
 
Below is Ogiji's report on his encounter with the emir -
 

Q. Congratulations on your 20th anniversary on the throne as the Emir of Zuru. From the barracks to the palace, how has the experience being in the last 20 years?

 

A. Well, very interesting. I was in the Nigerian Army for over 30 years.

 

I join the army in 1962 when I left the secondary Government College Bida, along with Generals Ibrahim Babangida, Abdulsalami Abubakar, General Mohammadu Magoro, Mamman Vatsa, Col. Sani Bello and so many others. I can tell you that we had a fulfilled military career.

 

So, after serving for 30 years, I retired and became a businessman in Kaduna and was doing very well and comfortable until I answered the call of my people to come and serve them at home, to become the Emir of Zuru, which am serving now.
I became the emir in 1995 and now I am 20 years on the throne. I give thanks to Almighty Allah.

 

I can tell you the experience is a wonderful one, because I enjoy working for my people, I like helping the needy and helping to improve the quality of life to the people.

 

I have spent a lot of my meagre resources to do that and I am happy doing it for my people.

 

Q. How have you been able to achieve peace among your people in the last 20 years?

 

A. I don’t want to blow my trumpet, but with experiences I have had in the military, as an ex-military governor of Benue, Sokoto and Bauchi states, and again as Chief of Staff, United Nations (UN) forces in Southern Lebanon, as well as other military responsibilities, coming home to serve my people in a small emirate shouldn’t be a difficult thing.

 

So, when I came in, I observed so many things among my people, including poverty, illiteracy and superstitious beliefs and these constituted a lot of security challenges, because these were causing friction among the people, especially among Christians and Muslims.

 

So, I decided to sit down and introduced inter-religious committee within the emirate headed my some prominent people in the emirate and which members were drawn from both Christians and Muslims.

 


That took care of all the religious frictions that we were having in Zuru, which died a natural death and since then, we have been living peacefully in Zuru Emirate.

 

I also did the same thing in the area of security, because before now, we were having serious security challenges here in Zuru. I sat down with all the security agents (agencies) and I asked why we were having security challenges and we were able to identify the reasons, worked on them and we have peace now.

 


Despite the calibre of people that Zuru has produced, development is still slow here.

 

Q. What are you doing to mobilise sons and daughters of Zuru to ensure meaningful development of the emirate?

 

A. Again, having achieved peace in the domain, the next thing was how to mobilise the people to tackle the challenges facing us and in doing that, we decided to constitute different committees and associations.

 


Right now, we have elders meeting in my Council. We have the Zuru Emirate Council meeting and we have an association that is given much responsibilities- Zuru Emirate Development Society.

 

So, we meet regularly with our elites to discuss developmental issues as it affect the emirate.

 


It came to a point that we agreed with the elites and we gave them assignment on what to do in Zuru. They can to see that we have started development the town, giving it a face-lift.

 

These are done by our elites willingly and in addition to this, I task them to always identify with their communities, because everybody has a village. They should identify with their communities and see what they can do for it.

 

Honestly, many of them have done a lot of things for their communities and the emirate has introduced a reward for anyone who has done something good for his or her community.

 

In addition, it may interest you to know that at my individual level, I floated a non-governmental organisation (NGO) called Sami HIV/AIDS Trust, which has been working in the area for the past seven years now, because of the high rate of the disease in my domain.

 

I decided to do this because we don’t want to lose our youths, who are very productive in agriculture and so many other things, so I have to float the organisation and I can tell you that awareness is very high here.

 


Q. What can you say about the current agitation by pro-Biafran agitators in the Southeast?

 


A. So many Nigerians have voiced out their opinion on this issue, but I don’t think there is any need for such agitations now within the country, because we have had nasty experiences in the past.

 

We fought a civil war, for example, which claimed so many souls in Nigeria. We have leant our lessons, we know our differences, we know what to do and we had demanded the creation of states just to bring development to the people within the country.

 


So, some of these agitations, I think, are uncalled for. Why should we go back to what we have done before? They want us go and f

 
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