Why Shettima is in a hurry to develop Borno – Bwala
BY NDAHI MARAMA
Former Commissioner for Home Affairs, Information and Culture, under the immediate past administration of governor Ali Modu Sheriff of Borno state, Hon. Inuwa Bwala, in this interview said the formation of committees less than one week was in line with Gov. Kashim Shettima’s vision for Borno State.
He also spoke on politics of Borno and how Shettima will weather the storms. Excerpts:
Recently Governor Kashim Shettima approved committees to reform the education sector, rehabilitation and equipping of Hospitals and drilling of 100 and rehabilitation of 200 boreholes within 100 days. Having served in the immediate past administration and a strong member of the ANPP in the state, do you see the government meeting these targets in 100 days?
The formation of these committees barely one week after the governor assumed duty is in line with the pace he promised to move and the vision he told the people of Borno State during his inauguration. The committees comprise of tested hands and professionals in most of these fields and I have no doubt that they will deliver. What is heartwarming about the formation of these committees is that the governor does not want to disappoint the people of Borno State by the time he will be 100 days in office. From all indications, he is working towards meeting some of the pledges he made to the people of Borno State during his inaugural speech. One of them is his plan to drill 100 boreholes across the state by the time he will be 100 days in office.
With the committee on Water in place, it tells you that he is working in that direction. There were some rigs that were purchased by the state government for this purpose. Those that are down, he will rehabilitate them and those that are functional, he will put them to full use. From the way things are going in that sector, I am hopeful that, he will deliver on that promise.
On education, you know it is a broad-based subject, given the state of education in the state. Already the machinery for renovations of schools in the state has been put in place. Procurement of learning materials and equipments for laboratory is part of the recommendation, which the committee may have to work out, and I am sure it may not be possible for us to bring a revolutionary change in the educational sector in 100 days, but I can assure you that, change would be seen by the time the governor is 100 days in office, because by then there would be a focused, calculated and a deliberate policy for the educational improvement in the state.
As for the health sector, most of the hospitals are being renovated, some have been renovated and new ones have been built. What he is going to do in some of them is to put finishing touches, equip them and then purchase sufficient drugs. He is particularly passionate about the issue of health, having been a health commissioner, who initiated most of these things that are happening today.
Why is the governor focusing on just these sectors?
The resources available to government at any given times are limited in the face of numerous and competing demands. The government has do define its priorities in the areas that it wants to develop because pursuing everything at the same time sometimes causes distraction. So, the government in its wisdom chose to concentrate on the three sector and put them on the right track. After these, I am sure he will pick up another three issues and develop them. So, it is going on in phases.
Don’t you think that something like Agriculture is left out as this is the farming season and most of the electorate in Borno State are peasant farmers ?
The governor also served as a commissioner in the Ministry of Agriculture and knows what it means for the people of Borno State at this time. I believe the governor is not silent about the agricultural sector. It is just that he has not mentioned it.
There are plans for the farming season and His Excellency has promised to provide in addition to the 600 tractors procured for distribution to all local government in the state more tractors such that, by the time we attend one year in office or may be second year in office he would have provided at least 50 tractors for each local government area in the state, which will be sufficient for the farming needs of the farmers. Secondly, he is in the process procuring fertilizers. There are also arrangements to bring chemicals. So, it is not as if he has ignored farming, why he is not emphasizing on farming for now is because already the machinery is on ground.