Vice-President Namadi Sambo on Thursday said he was personally in support of the creation of New Gurara State out of the present Kaduna State.
Mr. Sambo, who made his position known at the annual Afan Festival held at Kagoro, Kaduna State, said the demand for Gurara state was a positive agitation aimed at uplifting the quality of lives of the people.
According to him, the Federal Government recognises the inalienable rights of the citizens to operate within the confines of the law for self-determination, promotion and harnessing the potential of its people.
“Therefore, the socio-political emancipation of a people lies in their conscious effort to champion a cause that will progressively move them to the next level,’’ he noted.
The vice-president expressed Federal Government’s sympathy over the loss of lives and property in the Southern part of Kaduna State, saying government was committed to setting up a military formation that would ensure adequate security in the area.
He said, “We shall defeat the evil of this insurgency and terrorist acts. God willing, we shall have peace and development in our dear country.’’
While congratulating the people for the New Year, Mr. Sambo emphasised that the year was an important year, being an election year, stressing that government was committed to delivering free and fair elections.
He, therefore, urged the people to be peaceful during and after the elections, saying “no ambition of any politician is worth the blood of any Nigerian.
“I want to draw our attention to the fact that this time around, no act of violence shall be tolerated.’’
He warned that decisive actions would be taken against any person participating in any violent act before, during and after the elections.
On the festival, Mr. Sambo said President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration was committed to revamping Nigeria’s tourism potential to make it a more viable venture, which would create employment and increase wealth for the people.
He added that the Afan festival had not only assisted in unifying the people of Kagoro but had further promoted the nation’s rich cultural heritage in the eyes of the world.
He said government had opened the frontiers for effective utilisation of the huge mineral deposits in the area through the Public Private Partnership policy.
Mr. Sambo then announced that the two Kagoro erosion projects at Kajimi were nearing completion.
In his remark, Governor Ramalan Yero of Kaduna State said the Kagoro people provided an example of how diverse groups should live together peacefully.
He said that the state government recognised that culture and tourism were important sources of Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
He added that his administration was doing everything possible to ensure the provision of adequate security in the area.
On the agitation for the creation of Gurara State, Mr. Yero said the executive and legislative arm of the state government were all in support of the creation of the new state.
The Chairman of the occasion and the President of Kagoro Development Association, Andrew Yakubu, a former group managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and Paul Abiyong, respectively, noted the importance of the day to the people of Kagoro.