A concerned indigene and a contractor from Borno State, North-Eastern Nigeria, Alhaji Mala Zanna Abdullahi raised an alarm over the lack of patronage by the North East Development Commission (NEDC), a ministry created to carter for the need of North East states which suffered various degrees of attacks by Boko Haram, ISWAP insurgents.
He said denying contracts to indigenous contractors and award to outside States contractors at the detriment of qualified home-based contractors will attract a protest in disagreement because it is an act seen marginalizing and excluding the region contractors from developing the area with their own willing hands.
He revealed that the process of reconciliation and rehabilitation is one of the mandates of the agency, and indigenous contractors are a part of the entire process,their services to the areas must be worthy of consideration for the good development of the zone.
“Others cannot do it better than us, we know our problems,we will do it with a passion as a part of our service to humanity.” He said
You can recall that in recent years also the region is still suffering from kidnappers and all forms of banditry, including cattle rustling, communal clashes, and herders farmers fights.
Alhaji Zanna worried that despite this high level of crime that befalls the region, the efforts of the federal government to bring life and faster development back to the six states comprising Borno, Yobe, Adamawa, Taraba, Gombe, and Bauchi which suffered many attacks are not yielding the desire results.
Mala said good results are not seen in the areas in all contracts awarded to none indigenous contractors as it is being done in other areas like the ministry of Niger Delta which was equally created to serve the interest of the people of that region.
He called on stakeholders and other relevant government agencies to encourage the contractors in that zone by patronizing them which in turn they will use the home-based artisans, Masons, engineers, and Labourers to develop their communities
He revealed that currently all contractors awarded in the region are done by none indigenes unlike what is obtainable in the Niger Delta region and other places.
“The contractors can not do it better than us, they are doing the work with no passion to develop the area because they are not from one of the six states.
” We are calling on the federal government to look into this with the eyes of wisdom, let the indigenous contractors be begun whatever kind of job because they know exactly the pains and the ugly story our people went through and still going through to survive the menace.
“How can someone from the east or west even South that does not know the demographic of our area be given a contract in billion of nairas, hired laborers from another state and you expect a good work? I don’t think is being done this way elsewhere. You consider home based first before anyone.
” I’m calling on the government to look into this else we will storm the streets of these six states to have a peaceful protest in disagreement because it’s never in the interest of our people,the process is jeopardize with lack of inclusion for God’s sake “Zanna said
Our correspondents in Maiduguri, Yola, and Bauchi made several efforts to speak to Paul Tarfa, Chairman of the North East Development Commission prove abortive.
Before press times all calls to his number were not being answered.