By Abdulmumin Sangari
Since its creation on 27 August, 1991 the Taraba state has never witnessed any substantial and tangible development. It wad carved out of defunct Gongola state with an arable land mass of 60,291.82 square meters in the north east geopolitical part of Nigeria. The state’s political terrain has always been volatile.
The cardinal objective in state’s creation is to bring development to the door mart of the people while at the same time free participation of the citizens that constitute such state.
The government that created the state had the good intention for the sociopolitical and economic development.
With the population of 2,750,000 and richly endowed with the enormous potential for development particularly in agriculture, solid mineral and tourism,but no effort has ever been made to tap these potentials.
Instead the state is today in the class of underdeveloped portion of Nigeria.
Aftermath of the last governorship elections has increased more security challenges for the people of state. The serious security situation is of concern to an average taraban. As the state election tribunal is making preparation to begin its sitting on the petitions brought before it, some politicians are working assiduously to thwart the effort of the tribunal.
For obvious security reason the tribunal was advised to sit in Abuja instead of Jalingo yet some politicians with ulterior motive are still bending to see that the tribunal sit in Taraba.
Our concern is the safety of the people and members of the tribunal. The post elections violent that threw the state into theatre of conflict, the lives and property destroyed can not be quantified. From Mayo lope to lau, Karim lamido, Jalingo and other part of northern taraba experiece their share of post elections violent. The central Taraba was relatively calm but not quiet because there were tension. In the southern part, Wukari in particular which is the master flash point youth took over Wukari– Jalingo road.
In addition to kidnapping and other criminal activities in some part of the state, the elections tribunal should relocate to Abuja.
In Zanfara for instance, it’s the security concern that made the state election tribunal to relocate to Abuja. A case of security challenge one can never predict but water vapour in the sky is a determinism for rainfall. Abuja is safe, the stake holders are safe and members of the public who may want to watch the tribunal proceedings are safe. The beauty of moving the tribunal to Abuja is that the hands of the members of the tribunal hands would not be tied. They will not work under any ones pressure, nor would they work under fear. There would be free hands no hanging and pranking like what happened in the governorship elections. If the tribunal relocate to Abuja, it will be free of interference from any quarter. Taraba is state any state in the federation it therefore needs the same treatment like other States where security concern led to the relocation of elections petition tribunal to Abuja.
We would have loved that the tribunal sits in Taraba where the people would have access to the tribunal but when lives would be in jeorpady, a reasonably peace loving taraban would absolutely discard that. that.will be put toases of insecurity abound in Taraba particularly on politics. Why election tribunal should relocate to Abuja?
Immediately after the last governorship election in the state, let’s thrash a repeat of what happened where many innocent people were killed, injured and property worth millions of naira destroyed. It’s pertinent for election tribunal to listen to the voice of reason to as matter of security concern relocate to Abuja.
We believe Her Lordship, justice Zainab Bulkachuwa is both a listening and humbling judge right from her days in the judiciary. Her knowledge of crisis ridden state like
Taraba which is part of her geopolitical zone should make interfere for the sake of justice, peace and freedom. Her lordship should critically and judiciously interfare in order to avoid postmortems. “Preventions are better than cure”. The tribunal is and must be seen as an arbiter of peace and justice more especially in state like Taraba.
With justice Zainab Bulkachuwa at the helm of affairs, the election tribunal will do justice to the Tarabans. We have absolute confident on the members of the tribunal. They’re men of “ timber, caliber and caterpillar “ in the judicial system who’ll listen to the complain of the down trodden.
If the tribunal heeds to the call to relocate to Abuja, it’s not a disservice to the people of Taraba.
Sangari wrote in from Kubwa in Abuja