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Gov. Bello urges monarchs to discourage tree felling, street begging among locals

Governor Abubakar Bello, of Niger state, has urged traditional rulers in the state to discourage locals in their domains from felling trees and begging on the streets.

Bello gave the warning on Monday when he received traditional rulers, who paid him a Sallah visit at the Government House, Minna.

The traditional rulers were led on the visit by Alhaji Yahaya Abubakar, Chairman, Niger State Traditional Council of Rulers.

The governor warned that people who refused to shun tree felling and street begging would be made to face the law.

He said that a tax force would be reconstituted to monitor compliance with the directive and prevent activities that would encourage desert encroachment and street begging in the state.

“I want to appeal to you, as our royal fathers, to discourage tree felling in your various domains due to its environmental impact.

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“This is to guard against future danger and to safeguard future generations.

“I appeal to you to also discourage the locals from cutting down our trees and burning of bush, either for commercial or any other purposes,” he said.

He also called on the monarchs including district and wards heads to look out for the influx of people to their domains and to report strange movements or activities to the security agencies and their agents.

He noted that community policing, was everyone’s responsibility and collective efforts, in tackling issue of insecurity the state and the country as a whole.

Bello frowned at the increased rate of street beggars and Almajiris in the state and called on Northern leaders to come up with laws against such practice.

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He attributed the security challenges in the country to activities of street begging, as well as parents sending their children to other states to acquire knowledge, without providing them with means of livelihoods.

“I am speaking with the chairman of Governor’s Forum, to call for a meeting, in conjunction with traditional and religious leaders, to enable us come up with a position on this menace.

“This is the number one problem we have and this is what is affecting our security situations because these children grow up with natural hatred for the society because they don’t know what parental care and love is,” he added.

The governor called on the political elite to stop shying away from the issues of street begging and almajiranci due to sentiments.

He urged them to confront the issues appropriately.

Earlier, Abubakar had said that the visit was to felicitate with the governor on the successful completion of the Ramadan fast and Sallah celebration.

He said that traditional leaders would continue to support the administration in the next four years. (NAN)