Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo of Gombe state has accused his predecessor in office, Danjuma Goje, of sending political thugs, known as “Kalare Boys” to assassinate him when he visited Kashere town on a courtesy call to the federal university there.
The governor was reacting to a statement released by the All Progressives Congress [APC] on Saturday in which it accused Mr. Dankwambo of clamping down on APC members in the state and ordering the destruction of properties of the former governor and also arresting members of his family.
Mr. Dankwambo visited Kashere, the home town of Mr. Goje on Thursday.
“During his visit, Gov. Dankwambo personally ordered the removal of all APC billboards and posters in the town, ordered the police and the army to break into Senator Goje’s family house, where they broke down doors, teargased and arrested his relations, including children.
“The governor also ordered the same security forces to break into the family house of Senator Goje’s wife, where they similarly destroyed doors and teargased the occupants, including the 90-year-old father of Senator Goje’s wife and the Senator’s wife’s 70-year-old stepmother, while all her sisters and brothers were arrested,” the APC said in its release by its spokesperson, Lai Mohammed.
Governor Dankwambo, however, denied the allegation, saying on the contrary, Mr. Goje was the one who ordered an attack on him.
The governor’s spokesperson, Junaid Mohammed, who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES over the telephone said “what happened on Thursday was simply a case of assassination attempt on his excellency, Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo”.
Mr. Mohammed also said Mr. Dankwambo was in Kashere on a courtesy call to the federal University on the invitation of the Vice Chancelor.
He also said the governor’s visit was conducted peacefully at the University, but trouble started when he decided to visit the palace of the traditional ruler of the town.
“As is the tradition, the governor decided to visit the palace of the emir to pay homage, but our convoy was attacked by Kalare thugs near the roundabout right in front of the Police Station,
“The vehicle I was travelling in was the one that was first attacked because we were in front of the governor’s car, but they did not spare the governor’s vehicle and threw all sorts of objects at it. They destroyed the side glass where he was seated.
“In all of this, the governor ordered that no one should be maltreated,” Mr. Mohammed said.
He also denied that the governor ordered the arrest of members of Mr. Goje’s family.
He said all those who presently in custody were simply invited by the police, who as expected, launched an investigation into the incident.
“You know the police will not allow an attempt on the life of even a sitting Local Government Councillor, not to talk of an executive governor. So they have begun investigation into the matter and have therefore, invited some persons in that regard,” he said.
Mr. Mohammed also debunked insinuations that Mr. Dankwambo was planning to relocate the University from the town.
He said the governor, while serving as the Accountant General of the Federation, alongside many indigenes of Gombe state in the Federal cabinet, lobbied President Jonathan for the citing of the university in the state.