Gov Bello, Niger State And The Metaphor Of The Tortoise, By Fodio Ahmed


Development does not come by accident but by practical and deliberate design of structural organization which greatly relies on the value system of the society. For instance a society bedevilled by corruption, injustice, poverty, crisis and insecurity can hardly thrive no matter the amount of devotion on the part of the government. The most stringent thing to do in such society by a new government such as that of Governor Abubakar Sani Bello’s is to undertake a critical study of the system in order to come up with strategic plans or ideas that would redefine the publics’ perception of governance. Quite alright, one would say that the new administration in Niger State and indeed Nigeria at large is undergoing the processes of self-re-evaluation so as to be able to attack the developmental challenges from a vantage position.
A public maxim says that the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Judging by the strides taken so far by Governor Bello, one could say that there is promise for the state that good governance shall be obtainable within the next three years in view. This is because of the visible efforts exhibited by the government towards the state such as the reconstruction, maintenance and completion of abandoned road projects by the PDP administration of Dr. Mua’zu Babangida Aliyu. There is no gain buttressing the importance of quality roads to the social economic development of any society therefore it is worthy of commendation that the governor as part of his activity during his first one hundred days in office embarked on the development of some key road projects in Minna metropolis.
Before this administration important roads in Minna such as Sabon Gari road, Minna Ultra Modem Market road and Old airport road were death traps, most especially the Sabon Gari road, though a commercial area was a terrible sight to behold and commuters experienced hardship while using the road which links Minna and Maitumbi. All the roads completed by the Governor are strategic to the daily activities of the masses who now ply them without any hardship. The government also carried out a maintenance exercise on Kasuwan Gwari and Mobil Roundabout and all are very important roads in Minna. One can only imagine the relief that repairing of these roads has brought the people.
No doubt, the accidents on these roads are bound to reduce to minimal level as a result of the intervention on them. Everyone knows that road construction and maintenance is a capital project but nothing can be compared with the joy of having quality roads that ease the daily activities of citizens.
Although some people may say that much is still to be done and indeed there is plenty of work to be done but one cannot push aside the fact that what has been done deserves our collective commendation. These roads were in terrible shapes while the former administration lasted for eight years but very little was done to improve their condition and what couldn’t be done in eight years was done within four months by Governor Abubakar Sani Bello. The present administration may be slow in exposing its operational frame work but with the little that it has done one could say that there is hope for a brighter future for the state.
Finally, the citizenry must understand that, for quality governance to be reached, a lot of planning and re- structuring needs to be done. We must take a cue from the metaphor of the Tortoise that walks slowly and steadily but eventually gets to its destination. It is not about the pace taken but the quality of the pace so far taken. It is also said that, not all those who begin a race end up wining. As citizens we must trust our leaders to do right and bring about the needed development. Building Niger state is our collective responsibility and we can achieve the greatness that we crave for through constructive criticism of the policies and actions of our leaders.