Senator Marafa Criticizes Minister Matawalle for Insulting Northern Elders, Demands Apology

Senator Marafa strongly criticizes Minister Matawalle for describing Northern Elders as a "political burden," demands retraction and apology, underscoring unity within APC and Tinubu's commitment to all regions.

Nasiru Eneji Abdulrasheed
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Senator Marafa Criticizes Minister Matawalle for Insulting Northern Elders, Demands Apology

Senator Marafa Criticizes Minister Matawalle for Insulting Northern Elders, Demands Apology

Senator Kabiru Marafa, a prominent member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has strongly criticized Minister of State for Defence Bello Matawalle for his recent comments describing the Northern Elders Forum as a "political burden" to the North. Marafa, who coordinated the Tinubu/Shettima 2024 Presidential Campaign in Zamfara State, emphasized that instead of denigrating the Northern elders, Matawalle should have highlighted President Tinubu's achievements, programs, and policies benefiting the North and the entire country. "The North, Northerners, and Northern elders are neither a burden nor a paperweight," Marafa asserted.

Marafa demanded that Matawalle retract the objectionable remark and tender an unreserved apology to the Northern elders and Northerners in general. He stressed that President Tinubu holds the North, Northerners, and their leaders in high esteem, and that Matawalle's view does not reflect the president's or the presidency's position. "Insulting the elders of the region, which gave the highest number of votes to ensure Tinubu's victory, is counterproductive and a disservice to the president," Marafa stated.

The senator, who is a founding member of the APC, underscored the importance of unity and support within the party and the Northern region. He emphasized that divisive rhetoric undermines the progress and unity that President Tinubu aims to foster. Marafa called on Matawalle to focus on promoting the achievements of President Tinubu's administration rather than belittling respected community figures.

Why this matters: The public disagreement between Senator Marafa and Minister Matawalle highlights the ongoing political tensions and the importance of maintaining unity within the ruling party. The incident also underscores the influential role of the Northern Elders Forum in Nigerian politics and the need for government officials to engage respectfully with critical stakeholders.

In response to the controversy, the presidency has not yet issued an official statement. However, sources close to President Tinubu have reiterated his commitment to working collaboratively with all regions and stakeholders to address the nation's challenges.

Key Takeaways

  • Senator Marafa criticizes Minister Matawalle for denigrating Northern elders.
  • Marafa demands Matawalle retract and apologize for "Northern elders are a burden" remark.
  • Marafa emphasizes Northern elders' importance and Tinubu's high regard for them.
  • Disagreement highlights political tensions within ruling APC party.
  • Presidency reiterates Tinubu's commitment to working with all regions and stakeholders.