Leaders of the North-Central states have announced the exit of the geopolitical zone from the Arewa Consultative Forum.
They said their decision was informed by the worsening insecurity in northern Nigeria.
They also announced the formation of the North Central Peoples Forum as a platform to fight insecurity and marginalisation.
The new North Central group is led by a former Minister of State for Health, Gabriel Aduku, who is the interim chairman.
Members of the group include former minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Jerry Useni, Ibrahim Mantu, former Military Administrator of Kwara State, Col. David Bamigboye, former deputy Chief of Staff to the President, Chief Olusola Akomode, the Publisher of Leadership Newspaper, Sam Nda-Isaiah, former Nigeria Ambassador to South Africa, Ahmed Ibeto, a media consultant, Alhaji Tajudeen Kareem, a former Deputy Governor of Benue State, Chief Stephen Lawani and Alhaji Alfa Mohammed.
Addressing journalists on behalf of the group, Useni said the forum would unite the people of Benue, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, Plateau and the Federal Capital Territory in their quest to ensure that peace and stability was established and sustained within the zone.
According to Useni, the forum would pursue rapid industrialisation across all nooks and crannies of the zone.
He added that the association would pursue policies and process that would ensure that the massive solid mineral and agricultural endowments were adequately harnessed.
Useni said, “The forum is also aimed at ensuring cooperation and support for the good policies and administration of the six governors of the zone, irrespective of our political, religious and ethnic differences.
“We will support and cooperate fully with the Federal Government for full and complete implementation of infrastructures, development projects situated in the zone and the involvement of the people of the zone in the national affairs of the country.
“We will promote, defend and strengthen North Central unity and the interest of its people in the context of one indivisible Nigeria and to contribute to the safeguarding of her territorial integrity.
“Consequently, every zone now has a common socio-political platform where they meet to discuss their strength and weakness with the view to propounding and promoting progress and development of the zone.”
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