By 𝑫𝒂𝒏𝒊𝒆𝒍, 𝑮𝒐𝒎𝒂𝒈𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒂𝒉 𝑯𝒆𝒓𝒃𝒆𝒓𝒕
“𝐓𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐄 𝐀𝐑𝐄 𝐌𝐀𝐍𝐘 𝐃𝐄𝐒𝐓𝐈𝐍𝐈𝐄𝐒 𝐓𝐈𝐄𝐃 𝐓𝐎 𝐘𝐎𝐔𝐑 𝐃𝐄𝐒𝐓𝐈𝐍𝐘”
Your Excellency sir,
The land is green but the people of Plateau State have not been able to grow the desired crops for our state and our markets. This situation seems almost unending.
In July 8th, 2021 when I came across a picture of a woman staring helplessly at her farmland that was ravaged by the “evil men” that visit at night– sometimes morning and in the afternoon, I sat and thought;
“What should we tell our children when they ask us why we are sleeping hungry tonight?”
Yes! What should we tell them?
You see this green Land; it is what most families depend on. We plant the food crops that we need for survival here and often, we do survive from them if the bad hospitals, bad roads, insecurity does not consume us all eventually.
I know people who have sacrificed a lot in the work for Peace in Plateau state. One day, I write about them and the the clog in the wheel of progress. God bless them.
I want to raise my child not to hate anyone or see anyone as an enemy, but how best can I explain to him why our villages keep getting attacked, or why those who attack us often go unharmed and without a trace. I am scared he will feel we are cowards when I cannot get a news item as a reference that clearly calls our attackers by their names.
Your Excellency sir, prior to the 2015 general election, I said I will write a letter to every elected Governor of Plateau State with the hope that they will get to read it, or some members of their cabinet will come across it and speak about some of the issues raised. While this dream sounds very over ambitious that me; some ordinary guy writing to powerful men, I find closure with these writings that I have spoken.
You do not know how I smiled your excellency when I just saw the letter I have written to the administration before yours. The internet is a very interesting space.
I remember pleading that the secretariat flyover should be completed. Well, does that mean that someone actually read my poorly written letter in 2015?
Well, that is not why I am writing this today. I am writing again because it is something I said I will always do.
In fact, a look at the last letter I have written says that the requests here will not be significantly different from the last one.
Let me first of all congratulate you on your victory at the polls. The celebration in the streets with your announcement and what we saw today at your inauguration says that It is a victory for Plateau State. I pray God will see you through your administration.
Sir, I will be praying for you and speaking about your administration in the coming days. Holding leaders to account is a task we must all do.
𝐖𝐇𝐎 𝐀𝐑𝐄 𝐖𝐄?
As a state, We are grateful that we are blessed with both natural and human resources. But resources alone do not make themselves useful. So, I write this piece to draw your attention to just a part of what we are blessed with, that of course, I know you are aware of.
Plateau State is rich in a variety of natural resources, including tin, tantalite, columbite, limestone, lead, zinc, and marble. These resources have the potential to generate revenue for the state and contribute to its economic development.
According to the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency, Plateau State has an estimated 2.5 billion metric tonnes of tin ore reserves, which is the largest in Nigeria and the second-largest in the world.
The exploitation of these resources can contribute significantly to the state’s economy and create employment opportunities for its citizens. For example, the mining of tin in Plateau State has created jobs for thousands of people, both directly and indirectly. The revenue generated from mining activities can also be used to fund infrastructure development, such as roads, hospitals, and schools.
Plateau State has significant tourism potential due to its natural scenery, cultural diversity, and historical sites. The state is known as the “Home of Peace and Tourism” and attracts visitors from within Nigeria and around the world.
Some of the tourist attractions in Plateau State that haven’t gotten much attention include the Jos Wildlife Park, the Pandam Game Reserve, the Wase Rock, the Riyom Rock Formation, the Kurra Falls, and the Shere Hills. The state also has a rich cultural heritage and is home to several ethnic groups, each with its unique traditions, festivals, and cuisine.
According to a report by the Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation, tourism contributed 4.8% to Nigeria’s GDP in 2018, and the sector has the potential to contribute up to 10% of GDP by 2028. If the tourism potential of Plateau State is fully developed, it has the potential to generate significant revenue for the state.
The tourism sector in Plateau State has not been fully developed, and there is a need for the government to invest in infrastructure, such as roads, hotels, and tourist attractions, to attract more visitors. The government can partner with private sector investors to develop the tourism industry. Before that, it’s important to set the ball rolling!
Plateau State is one of the major agricultural producers in Nigeria, and the state’s contribution to the country’s agricultural output is significant. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, Plateau State contributed about 3.8% to Nigeria’s agricultural output in 2020.
Plateau State has significant agricultural potential due to its fertile soil, favorable climate, and abundant water resources. The state is known for its production of a wide range of crops, including grains, vegetables, fruits, and livestock.
Some of the major crops that can be exported from Plateau State include potatoes, maize, sorghum, rice, yams, and tomatoes. The state is also known for its production of high-quality fruits such as strawberries, grapes, and apples.
If the agricultural potential of Plateau State is fully developed, it has the potential to generate significant revenue for the state. According to a report by the Nigerian Export Promotion Council, the agricultural sector contributed 22.35% to Nigeria’s GDP in 2019, and Plateau state’s contributed about 4% of that. The sector has the potential to contribute even more if value-added processing and exportation of agricultural products are increased.
The government can invest in infrastructure such as irrigation systems, roads, and storage facilities to improve agricultural productivity and reduce post-harvest losses. The government can also partner with private sector investors to develop the agricultural industry through value-added processing and exportation of agricultural products.
ASTC is still calling, PADP is still calling. There is more to be done.
𝐖𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐄 𝐖𝐄 𝐒𝐇𝐎𝐔𝐋𝐃 𝐁𝐄
My previous letter was over ambitious as I even mentioned the need for us to have our Sheri Hills turned into something more beautiful than Obudu. I remember talking about the Zaria road stadium as well.
I remember seeing the Gombe international conference center and I thought about us having something bigger than that in Plateau state. Maybe the ruins of the Luka Bentu Indoor Theater will rise again.
Your welcome as Governor will be the challenge of getting appointees who wouldn’t say; “… 𝐼 𝑤𝑖𝑙𝑙 𝑡𝑒𝑎𝑟 𝑑𝑜𝑤𝑛 𝑚𝑦 𝑏𝑎𝑟𝑛𝑠 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑏𝑢𝑖𝑙𝑑 𝑏𝑖𝑔𝑔𝑒𝑟 𝑜𝑛𝑒𝑠, 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑟𝑒 𝐼 𝑤𝑖𝑙𝑙 𝑠𝑡𝑜𝑟𝑒 𝑚𝑦 𝑠𝑢𝑟𝑝𝑙𝑢𝑠 𝑔𝑟𝑎𝑖𝑛. 𝐴𝑛𝑑 𝐼’𝑙𝑙 𝑠𝑎𝑦 𝑡𝑜 𝑚𝑦𝑠𝑒𝑙𝑓, “𝑌𝑜𝑢 ℎ𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑝𝑙𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑦 𝑜𝑓 𝑔𝑟𝑎𝑖𝑛 𝑙𝑎𝑖𝑑 𝑢𝑝 𝑓𝑜𝑟 𝑚𝑎𝑛𝑦 𝑦𝑒𝑎𝑟𝑠. 𝑇𝑎𝑘𝑒 𝑙𝑖𝑓𝑒 𝑒𝑎𝑠𝑦; 𝑒𝑎𝑡, 𝑑𝑟𝑖𝑛𝑘 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑏𝑒 𝑚𝑒𝑟𝑟𝑦.”
(𝐿𝑢𝑘𝑒 12:18 & 19)
Then, you will see a city center that is very dirty and without proper sanitation and waste disposal system.
Another key thing that will welcome you is the absence of law enforcement, and selective behavior when it comes to law enforcement in our markets, streets. From how vehicles are parked to how wares are displayed in places they should not be—the state seems like the wild where there is no leaders or laws.
𝑇ℎ𝑒𝑛, 𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑒𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑓𝑜𝑙𝑙𝑜𝑤𝑖𝑛𝑔:
- 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝑍𝑎𝑟𝑖𝑎 𝑅𝑜𝑎𝑑 𝑆𝑡𝑎𝑑𝑖𝑢𝑚, 𝑙𝑜𝑜𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑎𝑙𝑙 𝑡𝑖𝑟𝑒𝑑, 𝑙𝑜𝑜𝑘𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝑓𝑜𝑟 𝑎𝑡𝑡𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛!
- 𝐽𝑜𝑠 𝐼𝑛𝑡𝑒𝑟𝑛𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛𝑎𝑙 𝐵𝑟𝑒𝑤𝑒𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠, 𝐽𝐼𝐵; 𝐴 𝑣𝑒𝑟𝑦 𝑖𝑚𝑝𝑜𝑟𝑡𝑎𝑛𝑡 𝑠𝑜𝑢𝑟𝑐𝑒 𝑜𝑓 𝑟𝑒𝑣𝑒𝑛𝑢𝑒 𝑖𝑓 𝑔𝑖𝑣𝑒𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑑𝑒𝑠𝑖𝑟𝑒𝑑 𝑎𝑡𝑡𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛.
- 𝐵𝐴𝑅𝐶 𝐹𝑎𝑟𝑚𝑠: 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝑡𝑟𝑢𝑡ℎ 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑙𝑖𝑒𝑠!
- 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝐽𝑜𝑠𝑒𝑝ℎ 𝐺𝑜𝑚𝑤𝑎𝑙𝑘 𝐻𝑜𝑢𝑠𝑒;
𝑀𝑎𝑦𝑏𝑒 𝑎 𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑚𝑒𝑟𝑐𝑖𝑎𝑙𝑖𝑧𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛 𝑜𝑓 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑝𝑟𝑜𝑝𝑒𝑟𝑡𝑦 𝑤𝑖𝑙𝑙 𝑠𝑎𝑣𝑒 𝑖𝑡.
- 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝑁𝑖𝑔𝑒𝑟𝑖𝑎𝑛 𝑆𝑡𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑎𝑟𝑑 𝑁𝑒𝑤𝑠 𝑃𝑎𝑝𝑒𝑟 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑓𝑎𝑐𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 𝑃𝑅𝑇𝑉 𝑛𝑒𝑒𝑑𝑠 ℎ𝑒𝑙𝑝.
- 𝑃𝑎𝑛𝑦𝑎𝑚 𝐹𝑖𝑠ℎ 𝐹𝑎𝑟𝑚
- 𝑃𝑎𝑛𝑑𝑎𝑚 𝐺𝑎𝑚𝑒 𝑅𝑒𝑠𝑒𝑟𝑣𝑒: 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝑢𝑛𝑡𝑜𝑙𝑑 𝑠𝑡𝑜𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠 𝑜𝑓 𝑑𝑎𝑟𝑘𝑛𝑒𝑠𝑠 𝑎𝑛𝑑 “ 𝑡ℎ𝑖𝑛𝑔𝑠 𝑝𝑒𝑜𝑝𝑙𝑒 𝑎𝑟𝑒 𝑤𝑎𝑟𝑛𝑒𝑑 𝑛𝑜𝑡 𝑡𝑜 𝑠𝑝𝑒𝑎𝑘 𝑎𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑡!”
- 𝐻𝑖𝑙𝑙𝑠𝑡𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑜𝑛 𝐻𝑜𝑡𝑒𝑙
- 𝑃𝑙𝑎𝑡𝑒𝑎𝑢 𝐻𝑜𝑡𝑒𝑙 𝑅𝑜𝑐𝑘 𝐺𝑎𝑟𝑑𝑒𝑛
- 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝐴𝑏𝑢𝑗𝑎-𝐽𝑜𝑠 𝑅𝑜𝑎𝑑
- 𝐽𝑜𝑠 𝑍𝑎𝑟𝑖𝑎- 𝐾𝑎𝑑𝑢𝑛𝑎 𝑅𝑜𝑎𝑑
- “𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝐿𝑎𝑙𝑜𝑛𝑔 𝐿𝑒𝑔𝑎𝑐𝑦 𝑃𝑟𝑜𝑗𝑒𝑐𝑡“
- 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝑟𝑜𝑎𝑑 𝑛𝑒𝑡𝑤𝑜𝑟𝑘𝑠 𝑖𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒 17 𝑙𝑜𝑐𝑎𝑙 𝑔𝑜𝑣𝑒𝑟𝑛𝑚𝑒𝑛𝑡 𝑎𝑟𝑒𝑎𝑠 𝑡ℎ𝑎𝑡 ℎ𝑎𝑑 𝑏𝑢𝑑𝑔𝑒𝑡 𝑜𝑛 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑚, 𝑦𝑒𝑡 𝑛𝑜𝑡 𝑚𝑢𝑐ℎ 𝑑𝑜𝑛𝑒 𝑎𝑏𝑜𝑢𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑒𝑚.
- 𝑇ℎ𝑒 𝑖𝑛𝑙𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑃𝑜𝑟𝑡 𝑠𝑡𝑜𝑟𝑖𝑒𝑠 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝑙𝑜𝑡𝑠 𝑚𝑜𝑟𝑒!
While we are thinking about these things…
Sir, an international conference centre if constructed, is an image projector we need as a one stop “shop” for everyone doing business in the Middle Belt, North and beyond. In addition to this, we need a world class shopping mall in this state too to make this tourist haven complete. We couldn’t get back the Jos Terminus in its old location or a new one, and I feel reviving our markets will be a great one for this state moving forward.
Recall your excellency, The Jos Main Market was the Largest in West Africa and it was a major hub for commercial activities in the state and the surrounding regions. The market was known for its vibrant trading activities, with traders selling a wide range of products.
Before it was burnt down in 2002, the Jos Main Market was a significant contributor to the economy of Plateau State. It provided employment opportunities for thousands of people, ranging from traders and artisans to transporters and laborers. The market also generated significant revenue for the state government through taxes and levies. In addition, the market served as a major source of goods for consumers in Plateau State and neighboring regions, contributing to the growth of local businesses and the overall economy.
The destruction of the Jos Main Market in 2002 was a significant setback for the economy of Plateau State. It led to the loss of thousands of jobs and disrupted the flow of goods and services in the state.
As far back as 1989, that market was raking in an average of N18 million a month.
On Education, our primary, secondary and state owned tertiary institutions should be made even better so as to develop the human capital base of the state.
In 2019 for example, statistics on the performance of students in the West African School Certificate Examination in the private schools compared to public schools shows that our public education needs attention because that is where the children of the less privileged are mostly found.
There was 55.44% pass rate in Private schools while the public schools had 45.05%. 2020 was 64.04% against 55.09%; 2021 84.32% against 79.54 with not very good performance in Maths and English in all cases.
𝐏𝐚𝐲𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐨𝐟 𝐒𝐚𝐥𝐚𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐏𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬
The payment of salaries and pension can contribute to the development of Plateau state in several ways:
- Boosting the local economy: When civil servants receive their salaries, they tend to spend the money on goods and services within the local economy. This spending helps to stimulate economic activity and create jobs, which can contribute to the development of the state.
- Encouraging investment: A stable and predictable salary payment system can encourage investment in the state. This is because investors are more likely to invest in a state where they know that the workforce is paid on time and are motivated to work.
- Improving standard of living: Regular payment of salaries can improve the standard of living of civil servants and their families. This can lead to better health outcomes, education, and overall quality of life.
- Promoting social stability: Payment of salaries can promote social stability by reducing the incidence of strikes and protests by civil servants who are owed salaries. This can help to create a peaceful environment for businesses to operate and for the state to develop.
We have great entertainers here and those that left this state as ambassadors. I feel that the entertainment industry should be made to thrive. The talents we see are just enormous.
Entertainment can play a significant role in building the economy of Plateau State.
Here are a few ways:
- Job Creation: The entertainment industry has the potential to create a large number of jobs in various areas such as film and television production, music production, event management, and more. By promoting and supporting the entertainment industry, the state can create employment opportunities for its citizens, which can help to reduce unemployment rates and boost the local economy.
- Tourism: The entertainment industry can also attract tourists to the state, which can boost the local economy. By hosting events such as music festivals, film screenings, and art exhibitions, the state can attract visitors from other parts of the country and even from abroad. This can lead to increased spending on local businesses such as restaurants, hotels, and transportation services, which can have a positive impact on the local economy.
- Revenue Generation: The entertainment industry can also generate revenue for the state government through taxes and licensing fees. For example, the state can charge licensing fees for events and productions taking place within its borders, which can generate revenue for the state government. Additionally, the state can charge taxes on the income generated by individuals and businesses working in the entertainment industry, which can also boost the state’s revenue.
- Branding and Promotion: The entertainment industry can help to promote and brand the state. By showcasing the state’s unique cultural offerings, the entertainment industry can help to create a positive image of the state, which can attract investors, businesses, and tourists. This can also help to create a sense of pride among residents, which can lead to increased civic engagement and community development.
The state needs to grow beyond depending on what we get from Jos Electricity Distribution Company (JED) in terms of electricity. We really should do something about NESCO which to me, is something we can fall back to. From there too, something good will happen to our internally generated revenue, as taxation is not the only way forward.
Stable electricity can have a significant impact on businesses in Plateau state, especially – a support or alternative to what JED is offering can improve productivity, reduce costs, and increase competitiveness.
- Increased productivity: Stable electricity supply means that businesses can operate without interruptions and downtime, allowing them to increase their productivity.
- Reduced costs: Unstable electricity supply can lead to additional costs for businesses, such as the purchase and maintenance of generators and fuel. With stable power supply, businesses can save on these costs and invest more in their core operations.
- Increased competitiveness: Businesses in Plateau state that have access to stable electricity supply can be more competitive than those that do not. This is because they can produce goods and services at a lower cost, increase their output, and offer better quality products and services to their customers.
…People who want to invest in the state should be encouraged to do so and people with ideas should be given such opportunity to make their contributions.
Let the environment be very friendly for investors from within the country and beyond.
In Nigeria today, it is like everyone doing great had his/her footprints in Jos. So, we can explore more and make this state the entertainment capital of Nigeria, and a tourist destination for all. First, then lets rear and our image away from our past.
𝐒𝐓𝐀𝐘 𝐈𝐍 𝐉𝐎𝐒
Your connection with the people who have voted for you— the people of Plateau State in general will define the legacy of your administration in the coming years.
Therefore I recommend that you stay home and have regular chats with your people , to speak to us about “The State of Our State.”
Periodically your excellency I will recommend that you give the people Information on “the State of Our State.” The purpose of this to me is to tell Plateau people about the current state of situations and review your priorities and policies. It will be an opportunity for you to highlight accomplishments from the previous months , discuss current challenges facing the state, and lay out a vision for the future. In fact, this will keep you in check and in connection with your people.
When there is a problem, go beyond the press release. Speak with and to your people.
There are many destinies tied to your destiny! Your life and your actions have an impact on the lives of others. The choices and decisions you make will affect the course of other people’s lives, and that your destiny is intertwined with the destinies of those you govern. Sir, your success or failure will have a ripple effect on others, and your actions could inspire or discourage others to pursue their own goals.
Today, you have a responsibility to consider the impact of your choices on this state, on these people and I pray you act in a way that is mindful of the interconnectedness of all things.
Your Excellency sir, I will write you again, and share my thoughts about how some of the problems we face can be handled.
But right now, I say congratulations once more and God be with you.
Just so when some people thought that we are all finished in Jos, Plateau State, I hear us all saying, with the coming of this government that ; “This just the beginning of greater prosperity .” With the hands of our political leadership, with the choice we have made all to live in peace and to contribute our quota in making this state beautiful again, Plateau is rising!
God bless the amazing people of Plateau State, you are the unsung heroes!
God Bless Plateau State, God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
𝑫𝒂𝒏𝒊𝒆𝒍, 𝑮𝒐𝒎𝒂𝒈𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒂𝒉 𝑯𝒆𝒓𝒃𝒆𝒓𝒕