The Katsina State Governor, Aminu Bello Masari, has condemned the description of Nigerians residing outside their states of origin as strangers and indigenous Nigerians.
He blamed the lack of unity among citizens across the country as being responsible for such.
According to Masari: “I think we need to unite more so that nobody can feel he is a stranger in any state. Why can’t we move from a situation where we don’t have any indigenous Nigerians in the country but Nigerians?
“Some of you have been here since and even before the state (Katsina) was created. I wonder why you still refer to yourself as indigenous Nigerians. Is it because you refused to assimilate?
“I think I can understand some civil servants who came for one to three years and were posted out to another state. But for those of you who have been here for over thirty years and you are still looking at yourself as non indigene, We need to ask you why.
“I don’t think if you go to the United States and you go to one of the states, they will start saying for instance indigenous Americans in California; people that are not Californians but living in California. Well, it is discriminatory whichever way you look at it because a Nigerian is a Nigerian and he should feel free wherever he finds himself.”
Governor Masari made the remark when the recently elected executives of the indigenous Nigerians resident in the state led her members to pay him a courtesy visit on Thursday.
The recently-elected President of the Indigenous Nigerians Resident in Katsina State, Prince Kunle Awe, who led the delegation said they were in the government house to introduce the newly elected executive members of the association to the Governor as well as inform him of their planned activities and challenges.
During the visit, the association also conferred on Governor Masari, an award as the Grand Patron of the Indigenous Nigerians Resident in Katsina State for the fatherly love he bestowed on them.
“With your permission Sir, we are proposing to set aside a day for both Muslim and Christian members of our association to fast and pray for the peace and security of of the state and our nation Nigeria.
“Your Excellency Sir, it is also in our agenda to organize an annual unity and cultural day, in which every community registered under this association will be
given the opportunity to showcase their culture, food, dance, historical facts among others. I believe this would promote unity among us and make our children know more about our various cultures in Nigeria,” Awe said.
The new Indigenous Nigerian President, while seeking the assistance of Governor Masari on some of the challenges concerning the association, requested for the reallocation of landed properties of her members affected by the proposed Airforce Training School in the state.
Other requests of the association to the Governor include the provision of lands to build a permanent secretariat, provision of vehicles for the day to day runnings of the association, slots for Muslims and Christian pilgrimage, as well as provisions of employment to its members.
While reacting to the request, Governor Masari said the government may not be able to meet all the requests but will certainly look into them, with particular emphasis on those whose lands were affected as a result of the proposed Airforce Training School.
He however, advised the association President to rise up to the responsibility of his office as the government is not into funding associations.