Sule Lamido: US Trip Reveals Northern Governors’ Ignorance

by Ohepo Ohepo

Sule Lamido, the former Governor of Jigawa State, has openly criticized the recent trip made by Northern governors to the United States, where they attended a peace summit organized by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). According to a report by Daily Trust, the summit was intended to address the persistent security challenges in Northern Nigeria.

Lamido voiced his concerns via a Facebook post, arguing that the governors’ trip displayed a fundamental misunderstanding of the Nigerian Constitution. He emphasized that security is a responsibility of the federal government as it falls under the executive-legislative list, questioning the appropriateness of state governors engaging in discussions on such matters abroad.

In his statement titled “Advancing our shame and embarrassment beyond our frontiers!” Lamido remarked on the governors’ lack of understanding of constitutional roles. He pointed out that while their initiative to address insecurity is commendable, their actions suggest a lack of basic constitutional knowledge which undermines their capacity to govern effectively.

Lamido also critiqued the governors for not focusing on other significant issues that are within their purview and listed on the Concurrent List, such as agriculture, health, or local infrastructure problems, which could potentially improve the living standards of their states.

Highlighting the critical state of urban infrastructure, educational facilities, and widespread poverty in their regions, Lamido lamented the governors’ apparent disregard for these pressing local issues which also have profound security implications. He expressed dismay over the governors’ priorities, noting examples of perceived mismanagement and insensitivity, including a reference to an incident involving the Governor of Niger State, which he described as degrading and indicative of poor governance.

Lamido concluded by suggesting that the governors could have sought expertise and conducted their research on security within Nigeria from established local institutions such as the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) in Kuru Jos, the Administrative Staff College of Nigeria (ASCON) in Badagry, or even the Nigerian Intelligence Agency (NIA). He criticized the trip as an unnecessary expense and a waste of resources that could have been better allocated to address the myriad issues at home.

The former governor’s critique highlights a significant debate on the role and responsibility of state versus federal government in addressing key national issues like security, as well as the efficiency of governance practices in Nigeria.

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