Nwagu Calls On Taraba Citizens To Break ‘Lock Jam’

The Convener of the Say No Campaign Nigeria, Eze Nwagu, has called on the people of Taraba state to break the ‘lock jam’ in the state by demanding that the governor make an official appearance.

He said this while responding to statement made by the Taraba state Commissioner for Information, Mr Emmanuel Bello adding that he was wrong to say that “the governor returned,” but rather he should have said that “the governor was brought back”.

He also said his claim that the governor was received by a ‘tumultuous crowd’ is false as no media reported such.

In order to put an end to speculations about his health, the governor should have admitted his frail condition by addressing the people and thereafter ask for more time to fully recover.

“That has not happened,” he said adding that “all this drama is something we have gone through”. He described it as an act of “holding on to legalistic ties as something that we do when it is convenient. Remember in 2010, we played it until we invented doctrine of necessity”.

“This drama is unhelpful not just for the people of Taraba state, those are part of the things that make us the laughing stock in the comity of nations,” Mr Nwagu said.

He advised the governor to continue resting until he is fit to resume duty and let the acting governor continue in his stead.

He said that the health condition of serving government officers should not be “shrouded in opaqueness” and then called on the people “to break the lock-jam in the state”.

They Voted For Suntai, Not Acting Governor – Analyst

Public affairs analyst, Achike Chude, has said that the long absence of Taraba’s Governor Danbaba Suntai from office, without redress, is evidence of loopholes in the Nigerian constitution as the governor is the one voted to rule and not an ‘acting governor’.

Although, the constitution has made provisions that the deputy governor take over as ‘acting governor’ when the governor is indisposed, Mr Chude argues that “the people who voted for the governor, voted for the governor, they didn’t vote for the acting governor to be governor”.

This he said while reacting to the news of Governor Suntai’s expected return to office after a plane accident which took place in October 2012.

Using former First Lady, Turai Yar’adua, as an example, he highlighted that there was a failure to learn from history whereby “a few people who do not have any legal basis for directing the affairs of state” hold government and the people to ransom.

“That was not resolved right” because the people involved in the various acts were never called to book.

The culture of impunity may be at play in Taraba state even though “it was unfortunate that the governor had an accident. Unfortunate that he was injured” but this is about “a few people who are in power, who have availed themselves with all the trappings of power in a most undemocratic manner.

They do that through subterfuge, intrigue, outright manipulation of the system, corruption, intimidation, and sometimes outright threats against political opponents and at the end of the day, the whole state lie in comatose”.

Arguing that such long absence from office is unacceptable, he said the constitution doesn’t provide adequate instructions on the proper steps to take in such situations.

He also attributed the citizens’ silence regarding the matter to ‘the complacency and docility of the people,” adding that, the ignorance and illiteracy of the people is to be blamed.

He said “all of these things have a role to play when you are talking about effective administration of a people.”

“Our people have been so much marginalised… so they have surrendered their mandate to a few people who has taken it upon themselves to determine the direction of their state”.