By: Valentine Adese (JP),
The All Progressives Congress (APC) chapter in Plateau State has accused the Plateau State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) of being behind the violence, killings and chaos in Jos and its environs.
This allegation was made by, Hon. Enoch Fanmak Ramnan the Acting Caretaker Committee Chairman of the APC, flanked by the State Secretary, Hon. M. Bashir among others in a press briefing yesterday, at the Plateau State UNJ Press Center.
In the APC press briefing text, dated, 28th August, 2021, the APC said it has noted with utter disgust and total disappointment the desperate attempt by some members of the opposition (PDP) in the State and elsewhere to use the unfortunate developments in the state to advance selfish and cheap political ambitions.
The APC said, “We must avoid the divisive tactics employed by enemies of the State to use religion, ethnicity and politics to jeopardize the peace of the State.
“In this regard, we note with utter disgust and total disappointment the desperate attempt by some members of the opposition PDP in the State and elsewhere to use this unfortunate development to advance selfish and cheap political ambitions.
“In particular, we have noted their unacceptable utterances and inciting comments on both the traditional and social media, which are carefully targeted at discrediting the Governor of Plateau State, Rt. Hon. (Dr) Simon Bako Lalong and portraying the Government as, uncaring, with the hope of reviving their faded glory, as a rejected political party in the State and country at large.
“We have a lot of evidence to prove this claim, but we can cite a few to expose to the people of Plateau State and Nigerians the hidden agenda of the PDP to use crises and the lives of innocent people, as a bargaining chip for political relevance.
“We will not allow this their futile dream to come true”.
READ THE FULL TEXT BELOW:-
PRESS CONFERENCE BY THE ALL PROGRESSIVES CONGRESS, PLATEAU STATE CHAPTER ON THE SECURITY SITUATION IN PLATEAU STATE 28TH AUGUST 2021
Gentlemen of the Press, we thank you for attending this Press Conference, which we have organized in order to brief you on the position of the All Progressives Congress in Plateau State, over recent developments in the State particularly, as it relates to insecurity.
First, we want to express the sincere condolences of the APC family to his Excellency the Governor of Plateau State, Rt. Hon. (Dr) Simon Bako Lalong, KSGG, as well as the Government and people over the recent attacks in Bassa, Riyom, Jos North, Mangu, Jos South Local Government Areas where many lives were lost and properties worth billions of naira destroyed.
We sincerely sympathize with the families of those, who were killed and pray that, God will grant their souls eternal rest. For those, who are injured, we pray that God will grant them quick recovery.
The events of the past weeks and months have put Plateau State in the news for the wrong reasons and clearly attempt to jeopardize the achievements of the APC administration under the able leadership of His Excellency, Rt. Hon. (Dr) Simon Bako Lalong, in the area of peace and security.
After about six years of relative peace achieved due to the vigorous efforts of the Governor, using the Plateau Peace Building Agency, we as a party are saddened by the activities of criminals and crises merchants, who are bent on turning back the hands of the clock.
The APC believes that, this is the time to come together as well-meaning citizens of Plateau State, to put to shame this group of people, who are bent on making Plateau a hot bed of crises.
The good people of this State desire to live in peace and pursue their legitimate means of livelihood without any fear of molestation or threat.
We want to specially commend the Governor, for his proactive steps in ensuring quick intervention towards ensuring that the situation does not go out of control. We believe the Governor has done his best, but is greatly limited because of lack of direct control of the security agencies that have to receive orders from their headquarters even after the Governor gives them directives.
We hope that, the National Assembly will do the needful by amending the Constitution to provide for State Police which will give Governors direct responsibility to bark and bite.
While we commend the efforts of the security agencies in the State for containing the situation and doing their best to maintain law and order, we urge them to go further and arrest all the perpetrators of all the killings across the affected LGAs and ensure that they are prosecuted expeditiously.
Nobody should be spared if he is found guilty, whether he is a perpetrator or sponsor.
The blood of those, who were killed in Miango, Dong, Kwi, Yelwa Zagam, Rukuba Road, Bwai among others, must never be allowed to go in vain. All lives are precious and matter!
At the same time, we call on our citizens to continue to support the Government and security agencies, as well as, communities and traditional leaders, to quickly restore normalcy within the affected areas while ensuring that, justice is done to everyone.
We must avoid the divisive tactics employed by enemies of the State to use religion, ethnicity and politics to jeopardize the peace of the State.
In this regard, we note with utter disgust and total disappointment the desperate attempt by some members of the opposition PDP in the State and elsewhere to use this unfortunate development to advance selfish and cheap political ambitions.
In particular, we have noted their unacceptable utterances and inciting comments on both the traditional and social media which are carefully targeted at discrediting the Governor of Plateau State Rt. Hon. (Dr) Simon Bako Lalong and portraying the Government as uncaring, with the hope of reviving their faded glory, as a rejected political party in the State and country at large.
We have a lot of evidence to prove this claim, but we can cite a few to expose to the people of Plateau State and Nigerians the hidden agenda of the PDP to use crises and the lives of innocent people, as a bargaining chip for political relevance. We will not allow this their futile dream to come true.
After the recent unfortunate attack on Yelwa Zangam village, the corpses of those killed were evacuated to the Plateau Specialist Hospital for proper handling. However, the members of the party and their cohorts forced their way into the hospital, harassed and intimidated the hospital staff and forcefully took away the corpses for a road show just to score cheap political points.
They proceeded to the Plateau State House of Assembly where they were clearly seen in broad day light executing their plans with their collaborators before finally carrying the corpses to dump at the Government House.
This is sacrilege against the culture and traditions of the land, as well as, the height of dishonor for the dead. Unfortunately, they failed to achieve their aim beyond grappling headlines and showing how inhuman they can be even to the dead.
Secondly, a Member of the Party representing Rukuba/Irigwe Constituency Hon. Musa Agah rather than be with his people in times of difficulty, after the killings in Bassa, ran to a radio station sympathetic to his party, to propagate lies against the Governor to the effect that he went to see him and could not because he was sleeping.
All this was a calculated attempt to rubbish the Governor and cast the Government in bad light, so as to, obtain political favour from the electorate and also hide his failure to his constituents, who already are dissatisfied with his representation. He has not done a single project for them and hardly goes home.
The same members of the PDP have also had a field day using the recent attacks as their gimmick for political survival by sponsoring and pushing out false narratives claiming that the Governor is against the “Plateau Interest” and as such should be impeached.
This is the height of irresponsibility and worst form of politics by people that are afraid of facing the electorate because they are being chased by their shadows and know that, they have nothing to offer to the people of Plateau State and Nigeria even in the area of security.
Governor Lalong has surpassed their records and they cannot swallow it.
No wonder, they have been vehemently trying to deny that there has not been peace in Plateau State since the coming into office of the Lalong led APC administration even when the facts are before them. Many of them who ran away from the State came back while those, who could not go out at night, now barely sleep in their homes.
Others now go into areas hitherto considered as “no go” areas without any hesitation as the State continued to witness the influx of economic investments; national and international conferences; as well as visit by tourists.
All these are achievements that the APC Government of Governor Simon Lalong has achieved which give them sleepless nights and they are desperate to trivialize.
They have gone to ridiculous low levels to accuse the Governor of being close to the President, as if that is a crime.
They forget that, during their time, they literally relocated to the Villa and had the misfortune of suffering defeat in the famous 16 is greater than 19 saga.
We are proud that our Governor, who is APC, enjoys good, healthy and mutual relationship with the President, who is the leader of our party in the country and has attracted many good projects and appointments to Plateau State. They are for the benefit of everyone including members of PDP.
We are also taken aback by their campaign of calumny against the Governor being the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum, which they have been desperately trying to castigate.
They are trying to sell a dummy to the gullible that being Chairman of Northern Governors is against the interest of the people of Plateau State. This is a big lie that has no basis.
If they had the failed ambition to become Chairman of the 36 Governors during their era, what is wrong with Governor Lalong succeeding to be Chairman of 19 Northern Governors? This is a great political advantage to the State that is working in favour of the State today and will work tomorrow. Instead of being jealous and petty, they should thank God that their own in not only on the table, but leading it. We make bold to say that so far, Governor Lalong has not stood by to see any decision taken against the interest of Plateau State. Let them name one they can lay claim to.
They are quick to peddle lies that the Governor is not against open grazing whereas the facts are contrary. The Governor has championed the concept of Ranching which will replace open grazing as he was the first to embrace the National Livestock Transformation Programme. He has sent a Bill to the House of Assembly which when passed will outlaw the movement of cattle in any part of Plateau State. Rather than prevail on their members to pass the bill into law, they are busy spreading falsehood to gain political sympathy.
Let the people ask them to pressure their members at the House to do the needful.
The same unfounded narratives has been spread by them to the effect that the Governor is supporting land grabbing. This is totally false and very unfortunate because the Governor signed into law the Anti-Land Grabbing Bill into law this year. This provides the opportunity for anyone whose land is being claimed by another person to approach the courts for redress. As at this moment, the APC is not aware that the Governor has received even one petition from anybody or community that some aliens have taken their land. If and when he receives such report, our party is very sure he will act by directing the prosecution of such persons using the law he has put in place. Despite this, the PDP is continuously running propaganda and sentiments to win the hearts of the people.
We therefore wish to ask the good people of Plateau State to shine their eyes and not buy into the antics of the faded opposition party as they do not care about the lives of the people of Plateau State nor its heritage which they pretend to be fighting for. Their records are there to support the fact that they are only interested in power grabbing and sharing the common patrimony of the State.
Since PLASJEC came out with the election timetable, they have been restless because they know they will fail woefully. Rather than try to gain power through the back door by calling for the impeachment of the Governor which is impossibility and a laughable idea, we challenge them to test their popularity in the forth-coming Local Government Elections which have been set by PLASIEC. We assure them of a huge defeat any day anytime.
We also call on the good people of Plateau State to shun the manipulation of religion by some clerics who want to use the pulpit in the mosques, churches, or even in messages through the media to cause divisions and further escalate the situation. We want the security agencies to take action against such people and ensure that they are brought to book no matter their backgrounds. Plateau belongs to all of us irrespective of religious, ethnic and tribal differences. That is what our party the APC stands for and his Excellency Governor Simon Lalong is determined to ensure that there is justice and fairness for all which is the basis of peace and security and a guarantee for stability.
Let us not destroy our common heritage by allowing sentiments to override our consciences and responsibility to be our brothers’ keepers. Our common enemies are the criminals who seek to kill, steal and destroy not our religions, tribes or ethnic identities. United we stand and divided we fall!
God APC! God bless Plateau State!! God Bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria!!!
Hon. Enoch Fanmak Ramnan Acting Caretaker Committee Chairman, Plateau State
28″ August, 2021