President Muhammadu Buhari has emphasized that most youths in the northern parts of the county were uneducated and school drop outs.
The President said these categories of young people can hardly make a good living because of their meagre income.
Buhari stated this while speaking in an interview with the Hausa Service of the Voice of America (VOA) yesterday.
Also, the president said that states were incapable of taking up the responsibility of having state police currently. He said he had ordered for 6, 000 policemen to be employed.
He also said that a decision on having state police would be made in line with the provisions of the Nigeria Constitution.
The President was recently under attacks during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London, when he said at a meeting that a lot of Nigerian youths preferred to sit down, do nothing and expect houses, good health and other amenities.
But in the interview with the US medium monitored by our correspondent, the President asserted that his London statement had been taken out of context and blamed the Nigeria media for doing what they like.
Buhari said: “You know Nigeria’s population is now between 180 and 190 million and 60 per cent of this population is youth that is 30 years down ward.
“You know in the north, most youths are uneducated or school dropouts. If not because we had good harvests in the last two farming seasons, the situation would have deteriorated.
“These youths, even if they travel out of the north for greener pastures, they hardly make it economically because what they earn as income cannot afford them to meet their basic needs or return home.
“All these explanations I made, they refused to highlight them in their report and you know the media in Nigeria in most cases only do what they like.”
“For instance, the nation’s achievements in the agricultural sector, where millions of Nigerians benefitted financially were left unreported by the media.
“Even when the Minister of Information and Culture wanted to reply that abusive letter written by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, I had wanted Lai not to reply the letter, but I thought I should allow him highlight the achievements of our administration.’’
The president said that was part of fresh measures to address the nation’s security challenges, including the farmers/herdsmen clashes across the country. He, however, warned the Police Service Commission, PSC, to ensure that those to be recruited were not taken from motor parks and the streets.
Buhari maintained that the creation of state police would not augur well for the finances of the states, adding that some of them were finding it difficult to meet their financial obligations to workers and other state needs.
He said: “We must carefully look at the position of the nation’s constitution on the issue of state police before we take final decision on the matter. If the constitution allows state police, so be it.
“But don’t forget that many times, the Federal Government gave out what we referred to as bailout to state governments for payment of workers’ salaries. How many states can pay salary promptly? And you want to add more financial burden to the states?
“It is not proper to employ a person, train him on how to handle weapons and then refuse to pay him – you can imagine what would happen in such situation,’’ he said.
Buhari, who is in the U.S. on the invitation of the American President Donald Trump, revealed that additional security measures were being put in place to check cases of insecurity in Nigeria.
“We will put in place more measures to check insecurity in the country, including increasing the number of policemen and training them.
“I have approved the recruitment of 6,000 policemen by the police authorities and I directed that those recruited must come from all the 774 Local Government Areas of the federation.
“Even if it means recruiting one person each from the 774, they should do that instead of going to motor parks, railway stations or market for the recruitment exercise.
“I gave Police authorities this directive,’’ he said.
It would be recalled that the Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Governor Abdulaziz Yari had, in February, said creation of state police would help in addressing spate of insecurity in the country.
Yari, who is also the Zamfara State Governor, said this at the end of a two-day summit organised by the Senate Ad hoc Committee on Review of Current Security Infrastructure in Nigeria.