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Published On: Thu, Jun 12th, 2014

Impeachment saga in Adamawa: Is the Presidency in the mix?

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Nyako and JonathanBy Umar Dankano, Yola

It is happening again in Adamawa state, an impeachment saga evocative of the last lap of Boni Haruna’s administration when he was Governor of the state from April 2003 to 2007. The present political development in the state is therefore history about to repeat itself unless the political actors are called to order.

Already, the equilibrium of the political clime has been distorted seriously to the extent that many political observers believe that the state may experience a terrible situation going by what is happening between the Adamawa executive and the legislature even as political analysts have opined that the precarious security situation in the state is enough reason for any discernible and patriotic citizen to play safe in the interest of peace in the state.

Sources in the state however allege that the impeachment move hovering around the Governor, Murtala Nyako is at the instance of the presidency.  They said that before the impeachment trouble permeated the State House of Assembly, the political arena had enjoyed relative peace and tranquility which enhanced the relationship between the legislative and executive arms of government, culminating in a vote of confidence passed on Governor Nyako by the legislature some months ago.

It is believed that what put asunder their convivial relationship was the defection of Governor Murtala Nyako to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the wake of the protracted imbroglio that ensued between him and the former National chairman of the PDP, Adamu Mu’azu over the control of the party’s soul in the state.

Political observers in the State are of the believe that if the defection of Governor Nyako played a role in the current impeachment plot, his vitriolic confrontation with President Jonathan was the lethal dose that made him to be on the target list of the presidency, as it was alleged that the latter was the unseen hand behind the latest impeachment move against Nyako.

The political rigmarole in the state was also premised on the defection of the three APC members namely Wafarniyi , the man from Hong constituency, Simon Issa from Song Constituency and Abubakar Jaringol from Mubi north constituency.

The move was assumed to be the final stroke that unraveled the seeming no love lost between the two arms of the government as the 25 member State House of Assembly became an all PDP House.

But in order to douse the tension and the suspicion behind their impromptu defection into the PDP, the three members all denied being bought over by the PDP as they said no amount of money could buy their conscience.

As expected, the defection of the three law makers was greeted with flurry of reactions as APC supporters in the state said they could bet with their last coin that the defected lawmakers were influenced with money which process served as prelude to the commencement of impeachment process against Governor Nyako, while PDP supporters insisted that the defected lawmakers were right in pitching themselves with the party of their choice.

Against the backdrop, many residents of Yola were of the view that the development in which the whole legislative arm was manned by members of the same party was not healthy for democracy especially as the reason for the defection of the three lawmakers was consistently a subject of conjecture.

In line with the unfolding scenario, many tongues in the state continued to wag over the propriety of the actions of the three legislators as many said they believed something nasty was in the offing.

Those who shared this view hinged their reason on the fact that it amounts to moral bankruptcy for a House that looked the other way when the state government refused to pay workers their 2 months salaries on the account of their involvement in an industrial action, to start making a case more than two years after the event occurred.

 This political partisanship they said, should be understood from the fact that the vote of confidence the House gave Nyako’s leadership was long after the two months salaries were denied the workers.

position was also corroborated by one of the legislatures and member representing Fufore Gurin Constituency Barrister Ibrahim Sadiq Dasin who, during the plenary session where the issue was deliberated, faulted the House for tackling the issue at the wrong time as he said one of the issues being considered (nonpayment of two month salaries) happened way back in 2012 only for the legislators to exhume it at a later date saying that there was more to the investigation than met the eyes.

Be that as it may, some residents of Yola said despite the fact that the House seemed to remember the issue belatedly, it was better late than never as they said the issues being raised by the House against the Governor were fundamental to good governance, which were within the purview of the House to deliberate upon as it sought to checkmate the excesses of the executive arm.

Peoples Daily investigations revealed that despite the fact that the presidency may be the unseen hand in the current move to impeach the governor, the move wouldn’t have gotten the expeditious attention of the law makers had the relationship between the two arms been cordial.

The lawmakers, it was learnt from impeccable sources, had raised some reservations in the way Governor Nyako had been carrying them along in the scheme of things in the political equation of the state as 2015 approaches.

 For instance, the Speaker of the House was alleged to have rendered to the Governor, unalloyed support when he served as the Acting governor occasioned by the sacking of 5 Governors including Governor Nyako by the Supreme Court in 2011, despite the fact that the Governor had ordered the closure of the Assembly for three months following the impeachment of his most preferred Speaker and member representing Fufuore/ Gurin Constituency, Ibrahim Sadiq Dasin.

 The House members allegedly felt slighted as the Governor did not carry the legislature along when he joined the All Progressives Congress (APC) despite their initial support and camaraderie to the Governor while he was in (PDP).

grievance cited by the members is the alleged influence and control the Governor’s son AbdulAziz Nyako wields in the party as he was said to be in total control of the party’s structures from ward to state level, to the extent that he determines who becomes what in the party which the lawmakers were not comfortable with as they felt that their political future was being mortgaged hence their latest action of joining the PDP.

Checks by our correspondent revealed that 18 out of the 25 Lawmakers were hitherto sympathetic to the APC as they were said to have even sponsored some candidates in the last state congresses but as their interests were seemingly not respected, they felt that the only alternative left for them was to ditch the party for good.

Similarly, reports within the political arena has it that the Presidency’s incursion into the Adamawa political debacle was punctuated by the seeming rift between the two arms of government and only seeked to cash in on the situation to settle its scores with the governor.

But unknown to the Presidency, the impeachment of Nyako will be inimical to the interest of the Speaker as one of his arch rivals and Deputy Governor of the state, Bala James Ngillari will be the one to enjoy the spoils of the plot.

But in consideration of the touted powers behind the impeachment move of the Governor, the Speaker allegedly found himself in a dilemma as he may not have the audacity to reject the demand of the presidency even though prosecuting the plan is against his political interest and survival.

 It may be due to the above reason that the Speaker consistently maintained that he was never influenced by anybody to impeach Nyako, and was not contemplating it even though the speculations making the rounds have refused to die down.

Reacting to the development the former secretary of PDP, in the state Mr. P.P. Elisha who defected along with Governor Murtala Nyako, to APC quoted section 109 of the Nigeria constitution saying that the action of the three lawmakers was justified.

He explained that initially he and the former Chairman of the party Alh. Mijiyawa Kugama, were in the PDP with the members to protect their interest stressing that the lawmakers have the constitutional rights to remain in PDP if they so wish.

Elisha, however charged the lawmakers to put the interest of the state above any political party interest in order to ensure stability of the government.

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