Posted by News Express | 13 November 2014 | 3,775 times
The Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, was this evening accused of working to impose former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Alhaji Nuhu Ribadu, as the next governor fo Adamwa State.
The allegation was levelled by two Adamawa politicians, Hon. Japheth Kugama and Hon. Barma E. Mayo, in a letter they wrote to Ngozi’s father, His Royal Highness, Professor Chukuka Okonjo, The Obi of Ogwashi-Uku, Delta State. The minister, however, promptly dismissed the allegation as baseless and unfounded.
The letter to Ngozi’s father, a copy of which was made available to News Express, was entitled ‘LETTER OF APPEAL TO THE OBI OF OGWASHI-UKU: PLEASE CALL YOUR DAUGHTER, DR. NGOZI OKONJO-IWEALA TO ORDER OVER HER ROLE IN THE ADAMAWA STATE GOVERNORSHIP ELECTION - SPONSORING/IMPOSING OF ALHAJI NUHU RIBADU’.
The letter reads: “We, the undersigned indigenes of Adamawa State, on behalf of our suffering, persecuted and marginalized brothers and sisters, are compelled by circumstances and events unfolding in our dear state of which your daughter, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, is a key participant, to write you this letter.
“We believe that it is the good father that you are known to be and your uncompromising aversion to, nay abhorrence of, injustice which made you to fight the Dieyi family which unfortunately claimed that the Umu Obi Obahai lineage that was not entitled to the throne of your fore fathers. We salute you for your doggedness.
“That victory accordingly reaffirmed and re-established the rights of your lineage to the throne. This is the fight, we have no doubt, into which your daughter, Ngozi, must have put in her all to support you financially, spiritually and in every material particular as your proud and good daughter.
“We also know for a fact that the Anioma people have been agitating that in 2015, an Anioma son/daughter should be the next governor of Delta State. The arguments of the Anioma people, in the spirit of fairness, equity and justice, present unassailable facts that cannot be questioned.
“The purpose of this letter is to apprise you of the great and unbearable harm which your daughter, Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, is about to wreak on the people of Adamawa State by heedlessly using her influence and powers to unjustly meddle in the electoral politics of that State to the disadvantage of our teeming masses and to also hereby appeal to Your Royal Highness to bring your fatherly wisdom to bear on the situation by advising her to eschew the urge to so continue. The fact of the matter, in a nutshell, is that, in conjunction with one Alhaji Hassan Tukur of the Presidency, Dr Okonjo-Iweala, is using her tremendous political and financial influence to be mount pressure on the leadership of the PDP to impose her bossom friend, Alhaji Nuhu Ribadu, as the anointed governorship candidate of that party in Adamawa State, all to the disadvantage of the sitting Governor, Barrister Bala Ngilari and other aspirants. In particular, they want the sitting Governor to be zoned out of the 2015 race for the Government House to clear the ground for Ribadu.
“Your Royal Higness, it needs be noted that until shortly after the contrived impeachment of the Adamawa State Governor some six weeks ago, Ribadu was not a member of the PDP. On the other hand, the incumbent governor of Adamawa State, Barrister Bala Ngilari has been a faithful party man who, even when the former governor Murtala Nyako (under whom he was serving as Deputy-Governor) moved over to the All Progressives Congress (APC), refused to move with him, because of his (Ngilari’s) loyalty to the Peoples Democratic Party. There is also no doubt that Ngilari has the requisite experience and exposure to govern Adamawa State. The PDP has also made a fundamental decision to give the right of “first refusal” to every first term governor. So why must your daughter collaborate with the Principal Private Secretary to Mr. President, Alhaji Hassan Tukur, and the National Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Adamu Muazu, to impose Alhaji Nuhu Ribadu on Adamawa State? Nuhu Ribadu, to the best of our knowledge has no better credentials than Governor Ngilari. In America, from where we copied the Presidential System, fellow party members do not normally challenge a sitting president or governor.
“Governor Ngilari has history, moral justice and voters on his side. Governance of Adamawa State is not the birth right of the Fulanis, which is why we reject the born-to-rule Fulani mentality that your daughter is helping to sustain.
“Your Royal Highness, as a renowned academic, we have no doubt that you are very well informed of the plight of the northern minorities with regards to how our northern brothers have lorded it over us in the past. It is on this note that we are compelled to bring to your notice the monumental injustice being aided and actively being perpetrated afresh in Adamawa State by nobody else than your daughter. An action that can harm Mr. President who not only appointed her a minister, but clearly made her a “super minister”, by making her the co-ordinating minister of the economy. In 2011 elections the Fulanis clearly voted for the then candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), unlike our people who massively voted for Jonathan. And considering the continued opposition of the Hausa/Fulani to Mr. President’s right to contest, they will still vote for an APC candidate come 2015. Our people have for long been taken for granted electorally and trampled upon eventually. But under a state of glaring injustice such as this, not any more will we allow this.
“There are over 80 ethnic nationalities in Adamawa State including the Fulani stock, to which extraction Nuhu Ribadu belongs. It is the same Fulani tribe from which the ousted Governor Murtala Nyako, who spent almost eight years in office, comes from. It is therefore surprising why Ngozi is hell bent in assisting to institute injustice in Adamawa State with intent to continue the legacy of oppression by insisting and aiding the imposition of another Fulani governor on the State by hook or crook. For we understand that she is even the main brain behind Ribadu’s shameless and inelegant cross-carpeting from APC overnight to pick a Governorship form in the PDP where she claims to wield control. In return for what kind of favours from the erstwhile EFCC Chairman is Ngozi doing this against our peace-loving people?
“Another pertinent question to ask here is how much does Ngozi know about Adamawa State as to start financing Nuhu Ribadu? We are of the belief that there is more to this and the blood of the innocent men and women that is being shed daily by the destructive acts of Nuhu Ribadu’s brothers for the purpose of retaining power will certainly be on her head.
“It is on this note that we passionately appeal to you to advise your daughter to stop her deliberate attempt to perpetuate evil and injustice in Adamawa State.
“May your reign continue to enjoy the desired peace.”
Reacting to the letter, Paul C Nwabuikwu, Special Adviser to Dr. Okonjo-Iweala, told News Express: “There is absolutely no substance to this ridiculous allegation. Okonjo-Iweala has no interest in influencing Adamawa politics or politics anywhere in the country for that matter. She is too busy with her job. Come to think of it, no one has accused her of impposing candidates in Abia her state or Delta where she hails from, so why would she do so in Adamawa? Yes, Nuhu Ribadu is a friend of hers but since when did friendship become a crime or a basis for a verdict of automatic guilt? The minister carries out her functions in a professional manner and her relationship with all governors is characterised by fairness and civility. Please tell these people to leave her out of their politics.”
•Photo shows Okonjo-Iweala.
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