A former Minister of Aviation, Femi Fani-Kayode, has said that Northerners have looted Nigeria more than any other region.
His statement was in response to the claim by the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, who said that Northerners are rarely arrested for advance fee fraud, popularly known in local parlance as Yahoo Yahoo.
Speaking at the Northern Youth summit organized by Northern Hibiscus Initiative in Kaduna on Saturday, El-Rufai said although North was the most backward and uneducated region in Nigeria, it was a thing of pride that Northerners are rarely arrested for Yahoo Yahoo and other financial crimes.
El-Rufai had said: “Nigeria consists of two countries; there is a backward, less educated and unhealthy northern Nigeria, and a developing, largely educated and healthy southern Nigeria. We have to speak the truth to ourselves and ask why is it that northern Nigeria has development indicators similar to Afghanistan, a country still at war?
“We have the largest number of poor people in the world, most of them in northern Nigeria. Nigeria also has the largest number of out of school children, virtually all of them in Northern Nigeria.
“We are being considered as the parasite of the federal economy, even though, that is not entirely true. Because northern Nigeria still feeds the nation. The richest business man in Nigeria is still Aliko Dangote, not someone from Southern Nigeria, thank God for that.
“So, we still have a lot to be proud of. We should be proud of our culture and tradition, as well as unity. You hardly can find someone from northern Nigeria convicted of 419 or being a Yahoo boy. That is something we should be proud of.
“We are generally considered to be more honest and less corrupt than other Nigerians. That is something we should be proud of.”
But, Fani-Kayode, while countering El-Rufai’s claim, tweeted: ”Put the EFCC, the Police and DSS in the hands of Southerners and see what happens. Northerners have looted the treasury over the last 59 years of our nation’s existence more than ANY other group of Nigerians.”