Former Borno governor Kashim Shettima has called for a power shift to southern Nigeria in 2023.
Mr Shettima made the call in Abuja on Friday at the public presentation of the book titled: “Standing for the Truth with Courage”.
The book is written by Professor Emeritus Njidda Gadzama, Chairman, TETfund Research and Development Standing Committee.
The book, prescribed as a wonderful resource material on the culture and language of the Margi people in Borno, is a story of Mr Gadzama, covering details of special events in his life.
The former governor, while stressing that the hope of the country rests on the mind set of her people, said the problem was not religion or ethnicity but people using it to achieve their goals.
“I believe in equity, justice and fairness. After power has resided in the North for eight years, there is a need for a power shift in the South,” he said.
Mr Shettima said that there was a need for the country to inculcate the culture of writing books to enhance the academic performance of students.
He commended the author of the book for looking at the culture of the people of Margi.
He said that the book would serve as a learning ground for people across different cultures, adding that about 52 per cent of the population lived in urban areas thereby losing connection with the tradition of the people.
“We are living in the 21st Century where our culture is beginning to face extinction.
“A lot of Margi sons and daughters are not familiar with their mother tongue; a situation not too good for our existence. This book is therefore not a surprise in bringing back our culture,” he said.
At the occasion, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, the Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari, called for unity and peaceful co-existence of Nigerians.
Mr Gambari said the best way to guarantee unity of Nigeria was for all the people to come together, while commending Mr Gadzama for using his experience to illustrate the importance of standing for truth in his book.
“We are going through difficult times in our country, economic and security but let us recognise that the whole world is going through the same challenge.
“Nigeria is part of the world. But the leadership under which we operate shows we shall indeed overcome all these. If we keep united, keep building, we cannot be ignored by any other country in the world.
“I am convinced that under the leadership of president Buhari, there is going to be a better future. He belongs to all Nigerians,” he said.
Responding, Mr Gadzama noted that his experience at the 13 Working Groups of TETfund research committee had deepened his faith in Nigeria that “we can make it as a nation’’.
According to him, Nigeria is a beautiful country that nothing should divide on ethnic lines.
”The intelligent people of Nigeria have great potential to together develop the country.
“As a member of a minority tribe in the North, I invariably will learn the Hausa language early. But if I were younger, I would want to learn to speak Igbo and Yoruba languages so that I will move around as a local native freely in Nigeria.
“Members of the major tribal languages too should learn one major language with one minority language, as there are many (250) to pick from.
“That way in 100 years maybe we will evolve a language that is owned by all of us,” he said.
Meanwhile, Professor Suleiman Bogoro, the Executive Secretary, Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) commended Gadzama’s strides toward ensuring that research and development was taken to greater heights in the country.