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Taraba Group Blames Wukari, Takum Crises on deputy governor

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A group, Southern Taraba Forum (STF) has accused the state deputy governor, Alhaji Garba Umar of destabilize the zone to prevent it from producing the next governor in 2015.

Prominent councils in  southern Taraba, including Wukari, Ibi, Takum and Donga have of late been a hotbed of crises.

In a letter to President Goodluck Jonathan the group

claimed the crises were being sponsored by Umar to pave the way for his emergence as full governor in 2015.

The letter was signed by the group's coordinator, Manu Benjamin Caleb and eight others.

“The ongoing mayhem is a well worked out blueprint to destabilize the zone and institute a reign of terror, especially now that it is clear the zone is ready to produce the next governor in the 2015 general elections,” alleged the group.

It accused Umar on jerking up his security vote on the one hand, and on the other hand, fueling crisis in the state.

We “have watched in studied dismay the way and manner peace has continued to elude the once peaceful state and the resurgence of old hates and intolerance,” noted the group.

“The march for power shift to the zone is on, and some clowns, led by the Deputy Governor, want to scuttle it with these crises to distract the region. Right now, the administration in Jalingo is not bothered about what happens to the zone.

“In fact, Garba Umar, the impostor who calls himself Acting Governor has said that he doesn't care if the entire zone burns to ashes. That explains why neither he or any of his lieutenants have  bothered to visit anywhere in the troubled zone since the immediate past crises in Ibi and Wukari.” lamented the group.

In the letter, the group claimed that but for the challenge posed by Senator Joel Ikenyan, the acting governor might not have “quickly breezed into Wukari and Ibi to shed crocodile tears.”

Continued the group, “Right now, there is suffering and anguish in the zone but Umar is looking away unconcerned. He is at war with both the ruling PDP and the zone as he secretly works for the opposition in his bid to rob the zone its manifest destiny in 2015.

“We are aware of his infernal plans to continuously enmesh the zone in constant crisis through smokescreens of Fulani herdsmen attacks and Boko Haram invasions. There may well be pockets of these but the truth is that politics, especially the 2015 politics is at play here,” the group submitted.

The group also accused the deputy governor of “now fully working with the opposition to destabilize the region with sponsored crises.”

The group also alleged that “Umar has increased the security vote from 80 million naira to a whopping N200m (monthly), yet he has no substantial peace to show for all his spending; that is if he is actually spending the money on security.

” Truth is that Umar wastes all the security votes in prosecuting his governorship campaigns and fighting the southern zone. Or what else can we say he is doing with the stupendous fund?” posed the group.

Seemingly drawing a parallel between Umar and his boss, Danbaba Suntai, the group remarked,

“A  Christian, Suntai was even closer to Muslims and made them feel at home in a state that belonged to all.

“Above all, Suntai calmed many nerves. Workers were never owed any salaries and the state's economy never hit the bottom like it has done now. The cumulative effect of all of these policies is that Taraba became one of the most peaceful states in the country.”

Stressed the group, “Umar however has shown that he cannot rise above the fray and be a leader: he clearly prefers his religion (especially those belonging to the Izala sect). He has not been able to divest himself of the robe of partisanship.

“And by expressly showing that he is not a leader for all people in the state; he has unwittingly armed a segment against the other. Even the appointments into key offices in government, show that UTC is patently one sided, unlike his boss Suntai who strives for a balance in a potentially volatile state.”

The group urged President Jonathan “to call UTC to order by directing him to dust up the master-plan of Governor Suntai in providing Taraba State with peace,” adding, ” before UTC (Umar)  came, the Hausa, Tiv, Jukuns and all the other groups in southern Taraba had lived together in peace.”