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News - North Central - FCT Updated: June 19, 2023

Former Youth Minister Says Middle Belt Killings Economically Motivated

By Maureen Okpe
June 19, 2023
Solomon Dalung
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A former Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Chief Solomon Dalung, said the incessant killings in the Middle Belt region of the country are economically motivated.

Dalung made this known during an interactive session with the leadership of the Middle Belt Journalists Forum (MBJF) in Abuja. 

According to him, “The killings have an economic undertone because of the mineral resources that exist in the region.

"Those financing terrorism here have economic reasons but using peripheral reasons,” he said, lamenting that the region has become the hub of both armed bandits, kidnappers, terrorists and unknown gunmen. 

Dalung stressed that not much should be expected from President Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led administration if it fails to address the immediate security challenges confronting Nigeria.

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“My expectation of the new administration will be on how it will deal with the insecurity in the country. Because without security I don't see any of the economic indices making any progress. 

“Insecurity has a broad national interest: banditry, Boko Haram unleashing terror on people in the Northeast and in the East, the issue of unknown gunmen has left several persons killed on a daily basis,” the former Minister said. 

He expressed concerns over the President's political will to deal with the issue of insecurity headlong.

Speaking on the emergence of the former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Senator Godswill Akpabio as president of the 10th Senate, Dalung took a swipe at President Tinubu for taking sides. 

“I don't expect Senator Akpabio to deal with any Nigerian problem. Looking at the past record of the new Senate President when he was a governor and Minister of the Niger Delta, the unclear huge allegations on his stewardship, etc, one would have expected the president to remain neutral.

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“Look at Senator Ahmad Lawan, even at the end of his tenure, he was still approving loans for Buhari. Loan for what when the entire citizens were in abject poverty?

“Despite corruption allegations against Akpabio, he was appointed as a minister and now elected the Senate President. I am afraid, under his time, corruption will dress up before good people. Nigerians need to pray and be ready to go to exile,” he said. 

He faulted what he described as carelessness in the manner the president announced the removal of subsidy saying, because Senator Akpabio was not briefed as a president as of the day the National Assembly was inaugurated. 

He added that Nigerians are now faced with excruciating accumulative pains in which corrupt leadership and haste decision on subsidy removal has caused.

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Maureen Okpe

Maureen is a media practitioner and an impeccable writer with close to 4 years active experience wor...

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