A former Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh, has advised lawmakers from the north to ensure they do not leave the House broke.

Mr Ogbeh, who is the Chairman of the Arewa Conservative Forum (ACF), asked the lawmakers to save some money before they will leave office.

He gave the advice on Monday at the retreat of the Nothern Caucus of the House of Representatives.

The retreat is holding at Zuma Resort in Niger State.

The two-day retreat on the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) and other legislations before the lower chamber, was attended by the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, and others.

Mr Ogbeh said the money should be invested in the industrialisation of the north to help the region to achieve industrialisation as soon as possible.

“I want to advise you, a piece of advice I gave myself which has worked very well. Let none of you leave the House broke. Make an effort and save some money,” he said.

“It may sound funny, but I am talking from experience. There is nothing more terrible later in life than to be a well-known nobody. I know that you are under terrible pressure. I can count how many text messages you get daily asking for financial support and there is no way you can run away from it.

“However, try and save some money. Try and think of a small industrial project to invest in. If every one of you were to make such an effort, there will be industries everywhere. No matter how small, when you leave here, you can go home and expand it.”

Mr Ogbeh also advised the lawmakers to develop a second address they can hand over to their children.

He said, “Make no mistakes. What I am telling you now is what I have told people before. Some listened and are happier for it, and those who did not listen are more miserable for it. Develop a second address, a more permanent address, which you can hand over to your children. The one that will give you an identity, dignity and protect you from laughter even from those you have helped.”

Speaking on the call for restructuring, the former national chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said those calling for the adoption of the 1963 Constitution are not familiar with it.

He noted that mining, including oil, are under the control of the federal government.

“Many of the people who are clamouring for restructuring are referring to the 1963 constitution, somehow, they believe that constitution gives to every part of Nigeria whatever resources there are. We are trying to get copies to send to all of you legislators to see. Item 25, part one of section 69 of the first schedule says that mines, minerals, including oil fields, oil mining, geological surveys and natural gas are on the exclusive list.

“The problem of the north is absolute lack of industrialisation and sluggishness in education. Now, we have people who go around capturing children and taking them to the forest. We are not doing well in human management, ” Mr Ogbeh said.

The Sultan, in his presentation, solicited the passage of the bill, that has been around since 2008.


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