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Plateau Assembly and the drums of destabilisation

By Kene Obiezu
15 November 2021   |   3:57 am
Sir: For decades now, the good people of Plateau State have known true tumult. At night, while families sleep, seeking rest from the hassles of the day, herdsmen climb down surrounding hills and butcher children and their parents.

Sir: For decades now, the good people of Plateau State have known true tumult. At night, while families sleep, seeking rest from the hassles of the day, herdsmen climb down surrounding hills and butcher children and their parents.

When people go to their farms to do what they love, as well as keep up their reputation as some of Nigeria`s most productive food producers, they find their farms trampled by cattle driven by killers disguised as herdsmen. When they object, they are torn apart limb by limb until there is nothing left of them.

Entire communities in the state have been broken, perhaps forever, by slaughter, rapes, destruction of buildings and livelihoods and by the chilling insensitivity of successive governments at the federal and state levels. In 2015, as the administration of Mr. Jonah Jang, which had been dogged by allegations of nepotism and favouritism towards his Berom ethnic group, entered its twilight, he sought to install someone from the same ethnic group as his successor. The people, many of whom he had owed salaries for months, rebuffed his attempts and then came Mr. Simon Lalong, the incumbent governor.

Under Lalong, early promise, which saw the scandalous backlog of salaries cleared, has since given way to alarming incompetence.

Now, with the 2023 elections around the corner, the political sorcery in the state is gathering steam. Under the warped watch of the government, the law, that searing headlamp of democracy, is being relegated to the background by some renegade members of the State House of Assembly. Under the distracted watch of the government, the legislature, that hallowed monument to people’s hope and power, is being stampeded by a parade of brigands.

How else can one explain the numerical witchery of six out of 24 members of the State House of Assembly who by their twisted calculations and outright defiance of the law have supposedly impeached Mr. Ayuba Abok, the speaker of the State House of Assembly? Who are those pounding the drums of destabilisation to which baleful beats the six (dis)honourable members bare their unsightly nakedness? Who are those who by their poisonous politics seek to corrupt the values of the young children of Plateau state?

It is telling that the Lalong, a lawyer himself, swiftly received as well as congratulated Mr. Yakubu Sanda who was supposedly elected as the new Speaker by six out of 24 members of the Plateau State House of Assembly.

In a country where the legislature is mostly a co-conspirator of the executive in a startling failure of governance, it is not surprising that every once in a while, man-made crises engulf the legislature at the federal level or across the states. It is usually a question of power.

In a democracy which Nigeria gratefully practices after many years of destructive military dictatorships, the principle of separation of powers is supposed to engender salubrious checks and balances. But in Nigeria, that is hardly the case as obsequious legislators embrace incompetent executives in a coven of anti-people activities with compromised judges. In a state driven by ethno-religious crises, those fomenting trouble in the Plateau State House of Assembly are dangerous snakes. They are enemies of the people and must be treated as such.

The long-suffering Plateau voters must mark their faces as well as the faces of those who sing their praises. Come 2023, they must be sent into political obscurity and oblivion.

Kene Obiezu, keneobiezu@gmail.com