2015: North’ll Negotiate With Presidential Candidate Who Can Protect Its Interests, Says Gov. Aliyu

Babangida AliyuThe Chairman of the Northern State Governors’ Forum (NSGF), Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger, says the country’s Northern region would negotiate properly to safeguard its interests in the 2015 presidential polls.

Mr. Aliyu made the remark on Sunday during the inauguration of an office complex for federal government workers at Enagi, the headquarters of Edati Local Government Area (LGA) of Niger.

“The northern region will negotiate with those seeking to be elected as the nation’s President in a bid to protect its interests,” he said.

The governor said the North was prepared to follow whoever was duly elected in the 2015 polls.

He however denied advocating for solely northern presidential candidates, saying the region would ensure that promises made to the people were adhered to in the collective interest of all.

Mr. Aliyu warned that the state would not accept the introduction of religion into its body polity.

“Here in Niger, we do not play the politics of religion, as such an attitude will negate the development drive of the state and the country at large,” he said.

Speaking on the LGA, the governor said the state government does not interfere in the allocation of funds to the local councils.

He noted that some of the councils had embarked on meaningful projects which have touched the lives of their people.

Mr. Aliyu then promised to embark on a statewide tour of the LGAs, beginning from August, to inspect projects being executed by the various councils in the state.

Earlier, the Edati council chairman, Isah Kantigi, said he had slashed the council’s overhead costs by 50 per cent.

“This is to enable the council embark on the N260 million worth of projects we have, which included offices for the federal staff deployed to the area, Magistrate Courts and a 15-kilometre road project,” he said.

Mr. Kantigi pledged to continue to execute projects which would have a positive impact on the lives of the people in the area from the meagre resources of the council.

“This will be in fulfilment of my campaign promises to the people,” he said. (NAN)

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