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The gathering storm in Taraba: Time to end the Governor Danbaba Suntai drama

By Ezenwa Nwagwu on 15/02/2014

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There have been series of media appearances and comments of late aimed at discrediting a video interview, freely granted by the ailing Taraba State Governor Danbaba Suntai. In recent times, governance has virtually collapsed in Taraba State and there seems to be the conspiracy of silence across the country. Events in this remote state continue to suffer excommunication and isolation from the rest of the country. This is to the excruciating pains of the people of Taraba State whose elected ailing governor has become enslaved and trapped by a cabal that has no respect for human life, exploiting the ill disposition of the legitimately elected governor of the state, His Excellency, Dambaba Suntai, for their pecuniary and selfish purpose.

You will recall that Governor Suntai had an accident during a crash involving a small plane in which he was flying. He was taken abroad. He was yet to fully recover when he was virtually dragged to the seat of power after being away for 10 months. Subsequent political manipulations consumed the then Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Haruna Tsokwa, in November, 2013.

This incident is reminiscent of the case involving the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua when efforts were made by an exploitative cabal to keep him in power. In Taraba, a small clique fraudulently claiming to act on behalf of the ailing State Governor attempts taking over the leadership of the state, including the running of the finances of the state. Apart from the sickening way they are playing political chess games with the life of the governor, these political gladiators are willfully breaching and violating the provisions of the constitution which the governor had sworn to uphold. Our heart-felt sympathy goes to the governor. We however think his challenge is being compounded by the antics of a self-serving group that wants to keep him in power, instead of allowing him to go for full medical treatment.

This is the time for Nigerians to speak out and stand on the part of the ailing governor. During the Yar’Adua period as well as in the current case, all manner of self interested liars, including leading politicians, all trooped to visit the ailing President and Governor, and all claimed and swore that the subjects of their nocturnal visits were hale and hearty, as well as fit as a fiddle to govern!

This is the time to speak out against this criminal and inhuman act of a small, unfeeling group that is more concerned about making financial gains from the misfortune of the state governor. In the case of the late president, as in the case of the ailing governor, very few who had some access to him. Yet, determining the truth in both circumstances should be really very simple. The Nigeria Medical Association (NMA) has offered to undertake an independent assessment of the ailing governor; but the pack of scavengers around him will not let this happen.

We are alarmed that the state of Suntai’s health remains undisclosed to the people that elected him. This has continued to fuel distrust and apprehension. The electorate is therefore not aware if the person they have elected is dead or alive; the one running the state or his unelected, curious and shadowy kitchen cabinet.

The desperation by the cabal to keep the state in its pocket was badly injured by an orchestrated media chat that went awry. It clearly exposed the bondage under which the ailing governor is being held against his will. The singular appeal for help and declaration of incapacitation by Gov. Danbaba challenges every true democrat to action in support of the ailing governor. We have watched the vampires and maggots in Taraba labour in vain to discredit the video interview.

We are worried at the inexplicable criminal silence on the path of security agencies and the Federal Government. We therefore by this conference demanding as follows:

- That the Inspector General of Police and the State Security Service investigate the video interview and publicly declare their findings.

- The Acting Governor of Taraba State and family of Governor Danbaba Suntai should with immediate effect accept the offer of Nigerian Medical Association for intervention in this imbroglio.

- The media handlers of Governor Suntai should release to the public their authentic version of the video interview.

- Governor Suntai should be allowed to personally refute the appeals in the interview through another video statement or by granting another video interview to a cross section of journalists.

- The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) and Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN) should rise up to this challenge and collaborate with NMA in resolving this issue.

- The Taraba State House of Assembly should explore constitutional means of investigating and revealing the state of health of Governor Danbaba Suntai to douse the tension freshly brewing in the state.

- The situation in Taraba has further underlined the fear that politicians value political power, its associated perks and privileges more than human lives.

•Being excerpts of a speech delivered by Ezenwa Nwagwu, Convener, SAY NO CAMPAIGN NIGERIA, at a press conference on the state of affairs in Taraba State, held yesterday in Abuja. Photo shows ailing Taraba Governor Suntai.

Source News Express

Posted 15/02/2014 11:03:20 PM


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