The Emir of Ngazargamu, Ahmad Tijjani Ibn Saleh has advocated for a law to provide jail terms for parents in Yobe state who refused to send their children to school.
The monarch, who exclusively spoke to Kanem Trust said, the only option for government to improve primary school enrolment in the state was to re-adopt the old system where responsibilities of enrolment is shouldered on traditional rulers.
“Many children, if not all don’t attend schools in the northern part Yobe state. There is need for a law to provide a jail term for any parent who fails to send his/her child to school. This is the only language they can understand and abide by,” he said.
The traditional ruler advised the state government to setup a committee of honest and refutable people who will visit the areas and assess the situation through physical inspection of all the primary schools and submit to government the true position on ground.
He also called for another law that would provide punishment for any person that fells trees for whatever purpose, to save the environment from total degradation.
The monarch said that government should take an urgent step to mobilize citizens on the dangers pose by indiscriminate felling of trees in the northern part of the state.
“The Great Green Wall project and other sister organizations effort toward addressing the menace of deforestation will be defeated if urgent step is not taken.
“The situation is very alarming that illiterate village heads and Bulamas are involved in selling big land to tree traders who destroy millions of trees on the bank of the rivers that prevented the areas from desert encroachment”, it added.
He faulted the 2001 circular that provided guidelines for appointment of District heads, Village heads and new district/village areas as a setback to discipline in the traditional hierarchy.
According to him, as a result of the recent law, enacted in 2018, some village heads and Bulamas can refuse to honor invitation from their district head or deal directly with DPOs or Alkalis through touts, which amounts to decay in the system.
Saleh, who called for the full compliance with tradition procedure in the appointment and creation of new districts/village heads, also appealed that same be applied in their discipline, suspension and dismissal.
“The law of the 2018 on the appointment, suspension and dismissal of the village heads needs to be reviewed in line with tradition and culture that existed for years and had made things perfectly working well.
“Appointment of a village head is too negligible to go to the table of the governor for approval. Since during colonial days to the second republic, appointment of a village head ends in Shehu’s/Emirs palace and never known to governors,” he added.
On security, he complained that his subject could not access their farmlands to cultivate for fear of attack, and advocated the use of local security operatives as the only solution to deal with insecurity in the area.
He said the decision to close down Gaidam market was counter-productive because it is forcing youths to go into crimes.
“On market day hundreds of youths are engage in jobs to earn their livings but with the closure of the market people have abandoned farming and keeping of livestock. It is only the market that connects buyers and sellers of the locally produce goods and services,” he said.
Speaking on monthly allocation to emirate councils in the state, the monarch said Yobe is the only state in the northern part of country that the money is not being paid directly into the emirates accounts but kept in a joint account.
The traditional ruler appealed to the state governor to start paying the allocation directly into the accounts of the emirate councils for effective and efficient performance of their duties.
“Yobe State House of Assembly approved N5m monthly from each LG to be paid into the emirate councils, later it was reduced to N2.5m as a result of recession, as the situation improves, we call on Your Excellency to revert to N5m as approved by the Assembly and remit to emirate accounts.”
The emir assured the current administration of the support and cooperation of his emirate.