Lalung: Plateau Is at Peace, Says State Will Soon Begin to Export Rice
Plateau State governor, Solomon Lalung, on Thursday, said the state is at peace noting that those who killed a traditional ruler in the state had wanted to stir up another round of crises.
Lalung, who spoke with State House Correspondents in Aso Rock Villa, said he will soon expose those behind the killing of the traditional ruler adding that the situation has since been brought under control.
"I think the attitude of leadership itself will encourage change. You will recall that when I came into office, I inherited crisis, killings everyday and the moment I was sworn in after a month we never heard of any killing in Plateau. So confidence was restored and we encouraged people to interact, gave everybody a sense of belonging and there is now peace in the state.
"In the past you have places where Christians don't go and places where Muslims don't go but right now in Jos they have forgotten there was something like that. So now it's a free place for everybody.
"We just celebrated our one year of peace in Plateau and everybody was celebrating because we wanted to maintain the peaceful atmosphere. Then I traveled out for just two days and a prominent traditional ruler was brutally murdered and I rushed back and investigation is still ongoing.
"I am hopeful very soon we will unveil those behind the killing of the traditional ruler. I have not slept on it and those are the things I have briefed the President. We are very vigilant and pursuing those who are behind this. Because after a year of peace, someone will come and start executing this kind of thing?
"It's someone that does not wish not only Plateau but Nigeria well because if that happens, and crisis starts again, you will see a lot of spill-over crisis in many parts of the country but thank God we are able to control that and to avoid future occurrence. We are protecting the state very well and ensure that the culprits will be soon be fished out," he further said.
The governor however said he was at the State House to brief the president on the state's agricultural strides and that the state would by next year begin exporting rice.
"The president is always excited when you are talking about agriculture, and the president developed a special interest in Plateau and other states that are already diversifying from oil to agriculture.
"In my state, we have put in a lot of effort into agriculture. So, every time I come to give him update on what we are doing and also seeking for intervention to improve on them.
"The Chinese are already there right now (for food processing plant). Some months ago, you saw me in a rice farm and you will wonder. Plateau and Kebbi now competing for rice production and by next year, we will start exporting rice from Plateau.
"Like I said, the president is always excited when you give him progress on agriculture. So, the president was excited and had encouraged us to continue to do more", the governor said.