Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State has cried out that the abdicated responsibilities of the Federal Government transferred to the state government are becoming unbearable on states.
Masari made the lamentation when the new commandant of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in the state, Muhammed Ibrahim, paid him a courtesy call at the government house on Thursday to intimate him of the command’s planned activities and to seek his continued support for the narcotic agency.
The Katsina Governor, apparently disturbed by the trend, said he cannot understand why federal agencies keep depending on the state government for vital logistics to carry out their responsibilities in states. Yet, they accuse state governors of underperforming.
Masari, however, pledged that the state will continually provide the necessary support within the limits of the state resources to assist the command in carrying out its assignment in the state.
“I have seen your needs but sometimes what is a problem to us as a government is that the burden from the federal government on the state is becoming too much and unbearable. It makes me wonder what the ministry’s budget at the national levels is being used for since all these institutions are taken care of by the national budgetary provisions? The budgeted money for such agencies is not coming to states, but the burden is being shifted to the states government who’s resources is far lesser than what the federal government is getting. We are worried because we have experience of what is happening at the national level and also we have experienced what is going on at the state level.
“All agencies of the federal government, without exception, come to states begging or requesting for one thing or the other. I wonder what the Ministries are doing with the budgetary provisions made by the National Assembly for the agencies?
“We are worried. Many of the agencies, security agencies inclusive, if the state government folds its arm, will close shops but we are aware that activities of these agencies are covered by the budgetary provisions of the federal government,” he said.
“Yet, on the other hand, state governors are being accused of not performing in this and that when the resources meant for performance are diverted to do some federal jobs. This issue is something I really don’t understand.
“Well, be it as it may, the Secretary to the state government is here. We will look at your needs and see in which area we will be able to support you without crippling our own responsibilities as a state government.
“We are concerned because the purpose of leadership and occupying the position of authority is to protect and defend the lives and properties of the citizens. To that extent, we will continue to support you because if we don’t, it is our people whom we have sworn to protect that will suffer.”
Speaking earlier on the drug situation in the state, the Commander of Narcotics CN, Muhammed Ibrahim, the State Commander of the Katsina NDLEA Command disclosed that a bulk of the drug problems, arrests and seizures in the state constitution of 94% of youths within the age range of 15-40, while those within the age of 41 and above are barely 6%.
To that effect, he said the command has designed a monitoring system to monthly brief Governor Masari on the treatment and rehabilitation plan of people experiencing substance use disorder.
However, he said to be able to carry this out effectively, across the 34 local governments area in the state, the command would be needing both logistics and moral support from the state government.