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No decent society will call elders paperweights, Marafa tells Matawalle

No decent society will call elders paperweights, Marafa tells Matawalle
April 22
08:48 2024

Kabir Marafa, a former senator who represented Zamfara central, says no decent society will refer to its elders as “paperweights”.

Marafa said this in response to a statement by Bello Matawalle, minister of state for defence.

Matawalle had described members of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) as paperweights.

The minister was responding to a comment by NEF who said the north made a mistake by voting for President Bola Tinubu in 2023.

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In a statement on Sunday, the former senator said by insulting the elders forum, Matawalle was insulting the people of the north.

“It’s not in our culture and upbringing to insult elders. No decent society will refer to its elders as a burden and paperweights. The north is not an exception,” he said.

“As one of the senators who worked very closely with Asiwaju as party leader (as he was then called) from the formation of APC through the primaries that led to the emergence of General Muhammadu Buhari as APC presidential candidate in Lagos, the politics of the National Assembly leadership in 2015 and 2019 and the processes and intrigues that characterised the 2023 Presidential Primaries, I can say without mincing words that President Tinubu holds the north, the northerners, and their leaders in high esteem.

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“Although, I’m not the mouthpiece of either the president or the presidency, as a Northerner and an elder in the region, as an APC stakeholder and one that has worked closely with both the president and the vice-president, I want to state categorically that this view expressed by Mr Matawalle is his personal opinion and not in any way that of Mr president or the presidency, and should, therefore, be disregarded.

“I know for sure that the north, northerners and the northern elders are neither a burden nor a paperweight in the scheme of things in the region and the country as a whole.

“The president shares this view, and therefore he is with me on this.”

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