Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong has charged citizens to promote the culture of peace which is cardinal to development and important to overcoming insecurity in the country.
Governor Lalong was speaking at the annual Ngas Festival of Arts and Culture, Pundung 2022 held during the weekend at the Pankshin Mini Stadium, Plateau State.
While commending the Ngas people for doing their best to maintain law and order, he warned that the government would continue to confront terrorists and other criminals and those who shield them.
Citing the recent incident in Namu, Quan Pan Local Government where some hoodlums tried to prevent the arrest of a suspected kidnap kingpin and resorted to destruction, the Governor said security agencies have been mandated to be ruthless with those who delight in creating chaos and sorrow for innocent citizens.
Lalong said from the dances, to cultural displays, and the array of food and artifacts showcased during the Pusdung Festival, he was reassured that the designation of Plateau State as the Home of Peace and Tourism remains very highly appropriate.
Accroding to him, the event has over time become an avenue where the Ngas people evaluate the progress of their people at home and in diaspora, as well as fashion out ways of doing more to impact the upcoming generation.
He assured the Ngas people that the Government will continue to carry out projects within their domain.
"Among other things, we have restored the Pankshin Water Treatment Plant which was moribund for many years and also completed the General Hospital in Kwall, abandoned for many years.
"Work has been ongoing at various Legacy Projects sites within Ngas land including Government College Pankshin, which we intend to transform to a world class Technical School in our efforts to develop skills and train entrepreneurs", he said.
Speaking on the 2023 general elections, the Governor stated: "As we move deeper into the era of politics ahead of the 2023 general elections, I wish to appeal to our citizens particularly the political class to be careful with their utterances and shun all forms of desperation that is capable of disrupting the peace of the State.
"Let us play politics without bitterness and put the interest of the State and its people above individual aspirations."
Speaker, House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, said the cultural festival is a veritable tool for unity, development and economic development which must be sustained and promoted beyond the shores of the country.
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