By Yinka Odumakin
GOVERNOR Bello Matawalle has emerged as the new face of northern Nigeria we have been yearning for. Since Nigeria abandoned the path of federalism for unitary rule, it has witnessed a virtual collapse of productivity as most people now live on handouts in a rental economy.
As against the early years of independence when all sections of the country were involved in one productive activity or the other and generating, we have become the global headquarters of poverty as our economy is based virtually on commodities that we add no value to and return to us processed and we have to sweat to own.
This crisis has eaten up most of the country but is worst pronounced in the north where little or no serious economic activities are going on outside governments sharing money from federation account and being spending officers.
Even in the Southern part of the country, we have reached a point where young people now find idle life so attractive rather than a life of productivity. This is one of the major issues in restructuring campaign which essentially is about resetting to federalism that once made all sections of Nigeria productive.
The debate has been so enervating and unfortunately those who assumed the best life in this unproductive arrangement have of late been mouthing “we don’t understand what restructuring means.”
It has pleased God to bring Governor Matawalle of Zamfara to shut off such insincerity and I am so proud that he is a friend I met long before he became governor through my brother Bashir Hadeja.
We would spend hours upon hours at the Abuja residence of the former House of Representatives member and discuss till late in the evening sometimes on various national issues.
Then in 2019, he threw his hat in the ring for the governorship of Zamfara State. Interestingly, a Prophet told him he would become the next governor of the state and he went for the election and was declared the runner-up.
Those who were in the know of the prophecy went to ask the man that his word had fallen flat but he told them that Matawalle would still be the governor. And before anyone could call him a false prophet, the contradictions the now sacked APC chairman built up in the party matured and the court ruled it had no candidate for the election and ordered the runner-up be sworn.