A visit to Yobe State
Sir: After the release of the Dapchi School Girls by the Boko Haram insurgents, curiosity took me to Yobe State. I traversed Potiskum, Damaturu, Gashua and Geidam, with stops at some interesting villages and hamlets. Yobe State is a typical dry savannah region like most Northeastern states, except in the southern part of the state which has a milder climate. There are many interesting landscapes and places in Yobe state. The cattle market in Potiskum is attention-grabbing – herd of cows beyond what eyes can see. It is one of the largest cattle markets in West Africa.
Yobe State is an agricultural state; it also has rich fishing grounds. The people are jovial and friendly. One cannot spend few hours with Yobe people in any community without getting gift of local chows and gist on the insurgency, agriculture, local and international politics. The scourge of the Boko Haram is visible in some areas, but the people are strong and resilient. I spent some few hours at Dapchi, Dapchi town is some 75 kilometers south of the border with Niger Republic, but it has many similarities with towns of northern Nigeria- people are mostly farmers using their vast land and living simple lives with strong community bond.
Yobe State has it fair share of development despite the challenges the state is facing from the Boko Haram war. The state Governor, Ibrahim Geidam, has done fairly well in the areas of healthcare, road construction, school renovation and expansion.
The next phase of development Yobe State needs is comprehensive human development programme and new initiative to complement achievement of the present and previous governments; this will stabilize the state and bring the peace, stability, socio-economic rehabilitation, and long term sustainable economic development.
Zayyad I. Muhammad Jimeta, Adamawa State, email@example.com.