By: Valentine Adese (JP),
Plateau State last week experienced another round of disagreements between the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC), over comments accredited to the Plateau State Governor, Simon Bako Lalong, who doubles as the Chairman of Northern Governors’ Forum, over alleged Farmers/Herders clashes and carrying of AK-47 for protection.
According to the Governor’s comment in a video that has already gone viral, Farmers were also arrested wielding AK-47 in the clashes “they” investigated.
In a swift move, the PDP, joining other Nigerians in a press statement tagged: LALONG! PLATEAU FARMERS DO NOT CARRY, AK-47, dated, 23rd February, 2021, called the Governor a liar.
The party also took further steps to call on Governor Lalong to resign immediately.
The party in its press statement stated that, “It is indeed another sad and shameful moment for the people of Plateau state, as the man saddled with the mandate of Governorship, Barr. Simon Bako Lalong a lawyer who has attained high status both in church and the society as the former Speaker has now turned to a tout and a Yes-man.
“This is a clear indication that with this continuous shameful outpouring and vituperations, our supposed dear Governor has lost his conscience and we believe his attitude is pointing to the known fact that the APC led administration in the state is not only insensitive to the plight of the people but they are out to destroy the heritage of Plateau, that’s why Mr. Lalong keeps disgracing himself thinking he is serving his master(s) diligently.
“It is very unfortunate that Plateau never got it this bad before, this is really sad for this great land, we are losing our youths, women and children as a result of bandits/herdsmen attack, yet our Governor is still singing praises on the graves of the victims of gruesome murder, siege and land grabbing.
“Governor Lalong ought to resign from his position as it is clear that he is not competent to remain as Governor of our dear Plateau state”.
Swiftly reacting to the press statement of the PDP, signed by its Publicity Secretary, Hon. John Akans, the APC described the authors as, “Confused faction of the PDP, who are trying to make a storm in a tea cup over Governor Lalong’s comments”.
In a press statement, titled, STOP MAKING A STORM IN A TEA CUP, in reaction to the statement of the PDP, signed by, Mallam Bashir Sati, the Plateau State, APC State Secretary, dated, 24th February 2021, the party stated that, “The confused faction of the PDP in Plateau State is at it again! – making a storm in a tea cup over Governor Lalong’s comments during an interview on Channels TV on Tuesday, 23rd February 2021, where he was alleged to have said that, not only herdsmen carry arms.
“Predictably, the ever crude factional spokesman of the moribund party in Plateau State, Hon. John T. Akans, came out smoking from all cylinders in an attempt to resurrect the evaporated fortunes of the rejected PDP, which has since been rejected by the good people of Plateau.
“Apart from his mumbled rambling in the uncoordinated Press Release, he was sighted on different social media platforms dissipating energy in trying to make maximum gains from the Governor’s appearance on the program. He viciously circulated a 34 seconds portion from the almost one hour interview with the hope to inflict massive damage on the Governor and the APC.
“Alas, he succeeded hugely among the few dispersed, gullible and disgruntled members of the faction of his party and a few other haters of Governor Lalong, who derive pleasure in any venture that derides the Governor, and in their view capable of pulling him down using their usual score cards of religion, ethnicity and hate.
“Sadly and very unfortunately, the total mission of the factional spokesman and his tattered faction, failed woefully among majority of the people of the State and others around the world, who are discerning, informed, intelligent and dispassionate in looking at issues from broader perspectives, rather than, the myopic tendencies of the dead PDP and remnant of its scattered flock”.
Not deterred by the response from the APC’s Scribe, the PDP replied the APC in a lengthier press statement also signed by the Publicity Secretary, Hon. Akans, tagged: PDP TO LALONG : GO BACK TO SCHOOL AND LEARN HOW TO TALK.
The further and better press release, according to the PDP, in part reads, “The reckless response of the APC to the genuine concerns of Plateau people on the recent irresponsible comments of Governor Lalong leaves one with no feeling other than that of utter disappointment and disgust.
“We continue to wonder how a sane person or party would condone such shameful and self indicting comments of a supposedly elected governor against his people before the entire world, describing it myopically as, “a storm in a tea cup” Such an idiomatic sense needs recalibration.
“The APC in its desperate attempt to do damage control has created more harm to Lalong and its party and have further exposed their cluelessness in governance.
“The writer, in his usual garrulous, uncouth manner, and attempt to divert the peoples’ attention from the colossal disgrace and failures of the APC, failed woefully, to address frank and glaring issues raised by the Peoples Democratic Party.
“They have however succeeded in exposing their immaturity in the whole saga.
‘What the APC through Mallam Bashir Sati would have done was simply to apologize to Plateau people by acknowledging their principal’s lack of decorum and emotional Intelligence and his blind romance with a superior power outside of Plateau”.
Still last week under review, ahead of the meeting of the Northern States Governor’s Forum scheduled for Kaduna, the Plateau State Governor and Chairman of the Forum, Simon Bako Lalong visited the Ahmadu Bello University and the Kaduna Polytechnic, as part of assessment of some legacies of the founding fathers of the Northern Region.
Governor Lalong, who started the visit at the ABU Zaria was received by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Kabiru Bala and top Management Staff of the University.
According to Governor Lalong, the visit was a fact finding one that was at the instance of the Northern Governors Forum, which is desirous of revitalizing the legacies of the founding fathers of the region and repositioning the economic fortunes of the region.
Same last week, Governor Simon Lalong took time to console the family of Late Flight Lt. Henry Bitrus Piyo. The Governor, described his tragic demise, “As a great loss to Plateau State and Nigeria as a whole”.
According to Plateau State Government’s Press Release signed by, Dr. Makut Simon Macham, the Director of Press and Public Affairs to the Governor of Plateau State, dated, 26th February 2021, “Governor Lalong met with the parents of deceased flight lieutenant shortly after returning from the Northern Governors Forum (NGF) meeting in Kaduna.
Adding that, the Governor, asked the family to accept the untimely death of their son as the will of God.
Governor Lalong, who was reported to have earlier sent a team to condole the family, said “the memory of the heroic pilot will continue to be honoured as he died in active service and for the security and peace of the nation”.
The Governor was accompanied by his Kwara State counterpart Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazak and Secretary to the Government of Plateau State, Prof. Danladi Abok Atu.