Adamawa group protests exclusion of Ngilari from 2015 governorship poll

Bala Ngilari Credits: Business Day

A coalition of communities and youth groups under the aegis of “The Adamawa Collective” has rejected the decision of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to zone the governorship seat to the Central Senatorial District.

The National Working Committee, NWC, of the ruling party, had zoned the governorship slot to the district, a decision which excludes the state governor, Bala Ngilari, from contesting in the February 2015 election.

Mr. Ngilari, who was deputy governor before ascending to the governorship position last month, hails from the northern senatorial district.

However, at a press conference in Abuja on Sunday, the TAC said the NWC’s decision was not only unjust, but smacked of double standard in the policy drive of the party.

The National Coordinator of the group, Eli Gamaniel, and the Secretary, Panny Boga, who jointly addressed the conference, said it is absurd to compel someone that was not part of a meeting to accept a decision not known to the laws, but taken as a form of exigency to solve a particular situation that had now been overtaken by events.

“It is important to state in very clear and unmistaken terms that when the decision was taken to zone the governorship of Adamawa to Central Senatorial District, Governor Bala James Ngilari was neither in office, nor was he part of the meeting,” the group said.

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“The Doctrine of Necessity that brought President Goodluck Jonathan to office during the illness and later death of Late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua remains a good reference point for the PDP.

“It was in that same spirit of the doctrine of necessity that late Governor Patrick Yakowa continued in office and contested in 2011 and won.”

The group alleged that the decision was orchestrated by the National Chairman of the party, Adamu Muázu, and the Principal Private Secretary to the President, Hassan Tukur, in an effort to foist a particular ethnic group and a candidate on the majority of Adamawa people.

It said: “It is on record that Muázu and Tukur have mounted tremendous pressure on Governor Ngilari to drop his governorship ambition in 2015 for the Senate, with the excuse that it has been zoned and reserved for the Fulanis, particularly, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu.

“Yet, it is on record that impeached Governor Murtala Nyako, who spent almost eight years in office, is of the Fulani ethnic extraction.

“We are not shocked by the stance of these hegemonists because this was the same stance the likes of Professor Ango Abdullahi took when he insisted that President Jonathan should not contest in 2011 or the heavens will fall.

The group argued that since Mr. Ngilari was never a party to the agreement that zoned the governorship to Adamawa Central, it could therefore not be used against him in any material particular.

It assured the governor of the support of the majority of Adamawa people towards his legitimate aspirations. The group warned that if the governor was forced out, the PDP should forget about the votes of the majority of Adamawa people.

“There comes a time in the life of a man that he must stand up to be counted and this is the time. Governor Ngilari must not negotiate away the rights of every tribe and faith to govern Adamawa State,” it said.

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