Christian Foundation for Social Justice and Equity and United Action for Democracy, North Central Zone condemned in strongest terms the undemocratic, uncivilized and autocratic posture of Governor Jonah Jang of Plateau State parading himself as the Chairman of the Nigerian Governor’s Forum (NGF) and profligacy of the Plateau State Ministries, Departments and Agencies who have been recklessly using Plateau Tax Payers’ money for advertisements on different media to congratulate and celebrate the illusive pyrrhic victory .
It would be recalled that Jonah Jang contested the Chairmanship of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum against Governor Rotimi Amaechi of River State and lost the election with 16 votes to Governor Amaechi’s 19 votes according to the result announced by the Director General of the Forum who served as the Returning Officer for the election and as viewed in videos posted on various social media. We are however taken aback by Jang’s declaration of himself as the elected or selected Chairman of the NGF even shamelessly desecrating it as an “act of God”.
It is very worrisome that highly tribalistic people like Jang whose government policies and programmes are tailored along tribes and ethnics which is evidenced in the over ninety percent difference in the school fees being paid by Plateau State indigenes and non-indigenes; a Governor whose tenure has been plagued with incessant strikes by distinct labour unions especially in the sectors like education, health, local government etc. A Governor who dissolved democratically elected Executive Chairmen, the executive members and legislators of the 17 Local Government Areas of the Plateau State and appointed Caretaker Committees without conducting election for over a year; a Governor that has failed to pay many civil servants in the state and threatens labour unions that the state government will enforce “No work, No pay rule” if the unions failed to call off industrial strikes; a Governor who has been alleged of contributing to the prolonged ethno-religious crises in the state. Definitely Nigerians does not want a Governor of these characteristics as the Chairman of the NGF even without the humiliation at the election.
In the same vein, we consider President Goodluck Jonathan’s Mid-Term Report as a Mid-Term failure. The nation was told that Nigeria has fastest growing economy in the globe and that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has increased in the last two years of his government yet chronic poverty has increased geometrically. Investors are afraid of coming to invest in Nigeria as a result of the security problems, our roads remained a death trap for users and the air is neither safe, power supply is still epileptic and our mothers and their children continues to die at birth. Corruption has been institutionalized under Mr. President’s watch. May 29 should be a Democracy Day celebration and not the present mere civil rule celebration. It should be a day to celebrate achievements and not using state money to celebrate failure. No sector in Nigeria fared better.
We therefore call on Mr. President to as a matter of urgency address the social inequality and widening gap between the rich and the poor of Nigerian masses which is a direct effect of corruption, unemployment, high inflation, insecurity, illiteracy, government wastage, pipeline vandalism, poor power supply, labour strikes and unstable economy and stop celebrating utter failure.
We also urge Governor Jonah Jang to stop parading himself as the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum and be bold enough to accept defeat and honour the democratically elected Governor Rotimi Amaechi as the Chairman of NGF while calling on Nigerians to defend our country’s nascent democracy.
Christian Foundation for Social Justice And Equity
Acting Zonal Coordinator
United Action For Democracy (UAD)