A sociopolitical group, Plateau Rescue Front has revealed how Governor Simon Lalong is de-marketing the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Plateau State due to his nepotistic leadership style.
Plateau Rescue Front stated this in a letter written to President Muhammadu Buhari by their Coordinator, Francis Kwarpo and made available to our correspondent in Jos on Tuesday.
The group accused Governor Lalong of favoring his political zone in terms of infrastructures and appointments
”…Governor’s rating on social justice has been very low as he has established himself as highly nepotistic with little or no consideration for the diversity of Plateau state while favoring only people from his natal zone.
” A case in point is the worrying report that the State Government intends to site the Teaching Hospital for the state university which permanent site is in Bokkos, at his home LG of Shendam which is about 250km away.” The noted
They therefore urged President Buhari to intervene in the interest of APC and Plateau indigenes suffering from Lalong Maladministration.
PLATEAU RESCUE FRONT 2
We consider it a great honour and privilege to be among millions of members of our great party, the All Progressives Congress, APC, who would be felicitating with you on the successful resolution of the misunderstanding at the National Working Committee, NWC, of our party which had threatened the peace of the party.
- We wish to commend you for your fatherly role which has further united the party and ushered in a process that if properly executed would put us in a position to serve the people of the country better.
- Mr. President Sir, as our name suggests, the above named group, is made up of mostly APC stakeholders/foundation members committed to good governance and enduring democracy in Plateau State and Nigeria as a whole.
- We have noticed that even as you are doing your best to improve further on the image and fortunes of our great party through good governance and selfless service to the people, members of the party in Plateau state can hardly beat their chests and boast that the State Governor, Simon Bako Lalong, is doing much to reflect the ideals of the party in the state.
- We therefore decided to write you this letter as a means of highlighting some of the issues impacting negatively on the fortunes of our great party in the state as well as hindering the progress and development of Plateau State in particular and Nigeria, as a whole.
- Mr. President Sir, Article 7 of the Constitution of our great party, which dwells on the aims and objectives of the party clearly states in sub section (v) that the party is expected ‘to consciously pursue the implementation of the policies and programmes of the party, through those of its members that are appointed or elected into government, Legislative houses and Boards throughout the Federation.”
- We have noticed how Mr. President is vigorously pursuing the objectives of the party by embarking on masses oriented programmes as symbolised by the introduction of the N-Power Scheme in which over 500,000 vulnerable persons have benefited, fairly distributed massive infrastructural development like the construction of the Second Niger Bridge, the Lagos-Ibadan-Kano Rail Project, and construction of several other roads as well as tackling the security challenges bedeviling the Country.
- All these and many more have endeared our party to the masses of this country which accounts for the increasing popularity of the party nationwide.
- With these success stories nationwide, we had expected that the State Governors especially those that rode on the back of your popularity and that of the party, to reenact part of the lofty programmes you are doing on a national scale in their respective states.
- This, however has not been the case with the Plateau State Governor since he won election on the platform of the party in 2015 and 2019.
- Though the Governor started some projects initially, we can, as faithful and loyal members of the party, state unequivocally that after observing the concept and processes that we are not impressed with how things are going.
- The State Governor for instance, introduced what he called ‘’The Legacy Projects’’ in the State by awarding contracts for the building of new schools and hospitals across all the 17 Local Governments Areas of the State which if completed, would have lasting impact on the lives of the people of the locality and improve the public perception of the APC led government in the state. But we are however worried that these projects would not see the light of day due to many reasons.
13.Reliable reports reaching us indicate that the projects were not conceived with the aim of getting completed. For instance at an estimated cost of N2 Billion Naira per Local Government it would have cost the State about N37 Billion but surprisingly Budgetary estimates have put the total cost to be N 69Billon. This is certainly preposterous; with about N 200 Million deducted directly from the Federation Account (ISPO) completing the project in record time will be a pipe dream
- We also have a 16 roads projects in all the local governments which were awarded but later abandoned.
- Apart from the issues of lack of infrastructural development and the inherent problems associated with the few already started, the Governor’s rating on social justice has been very low as he has established himself as highly nepotistic with little or no consideration for the diversity of Plateau state while favoring only people from his natal zone.
- A case in point is the worrying report that the State Government intends to site the Teaching Hospital for the state university which permanent site is in Bokkos, at his home LG of Shendam which is about 250km away.
- Apart from the fact that this decision stems from myopia and selfishness, we believe that this is not economically and logistically wise as there is a ready facility in Jos, the old site of the Jos University Teaching Hospital, JUTH; which can be converted for use and can serve the purpose easily.
- We are also worried that the Governor is planning to impose a candidate in the forthcoming Senatorial elections in the Southern Zone; which seat became vacant since the death of Senator Ignatius Longjan which will have damning consequences on the fortune of the party.
- The extent of the impunity is that a person with no record of contribution to the party is being favored just to serve the Governor’s parochial interest.
- To makes matters worse, active members of the party who have made contributions to see its successes and who in their rights, won elections as local government chairmen, are being victimized; suspending them from office simply account of expressing their ambition to vie for the vacant senatorial seat.
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- We believe this is not only undemocratic but is unhealthy as it deviates from the progressive posture of our great party.
- As Progressives, we believe that Government should be neutral and should be seen as objective and fair in addressing the concerns of party men and women who feel sidelined more so as it was for the same reason of high handedness that the people of the state rejected the former ruling party in the state.
- Mr. President Sir, we wish to also bring to your notice, that the original members of the APC in the state, who midwifed the victory of the party since 2015, have been sidelined while people who contributed nothing to the success of the party, some of whom were even known members of the opposition PDP, have been brought into government enjoying patronage.
- Since then, there have been complaints about the non-inclusion of the people who sacrificed so much to the success of the party to where it is today.
- With the strange elements now in the party hierarchy, crucial decisions are taken without taking the party stakeholders into consideration.
- As a sign that the party is run with arbitrariness, most members find it hard to make contributions as the party office is almost always locked and not accessible to members. All organs of the party like the state caucus, state executive committee and others have never met.
- As a result, the APC which should be in the ruling party and at the forefront for the promotion of justice, respect for good governance in line with the party manifesto is shrinking.
- We had thought that now that elections have been won and lost and the Governor is serving a second term, this is a good opportunity for him to trump governance over politicking so that the APC would consolidate on its gains in the state. But the state governor does not seem to know where to draw the line between what would destroy the party so far it serves his personal interest.
- Though the Governor has been elected Chairman of the Northern States Governors’ Forum, NSGF, we strongly believe the position should come with responsibilities especially in areas of common concern to the region like banditry and communal clashes and not intended for ceremonial posturing and opportunities to abdicate the primary responsibilities of governance at the slightest excuse.
- Our party in the State has come a long way taking into account the circumstances it was formed and how it was able to seize power from the PDP. It was a product of unparalleled commitment and the will of God.
- So far, the APC controls the State Legislature, Two Senatorial Seats and Majority of the Members of the State House of Assembly. However, the party has a lot to do to improve its works in the State.
- That is why we are drawing the attention of Mr. President to as the leader of our great party intervene to save the image of the of the party on the Plateau because if things do not change, it will affect the fortunes of the party in subsequent elections.
Respectfully and most humbly we submit Sir.
For: All members of The Plateau Rescue Front