For barely a week, Jalingo, the Taraba State capital has experienced epileptic power supply from the YEDC, as a result of a rainstorm which occurred last Tuesday leaving homes, institutions and electrical facilities destroyed.
In the wake of the rains which was accompanied by heavy eastern winds, were fallen trees, damaged roofs and fallen poles, although no life was said to have been lost.
Prominent among places affected were the Government House, The Deeper Life campground and the Taraba State University where the V.C said 40 percent of the buildings were affected.
Our Correspondent who was at the institution to assess the damage reports that so far, over 15 blocks were affected. They include: Faculty buildings, lecture halls, female hostels, departmental buildings, toilets, electric poles, laboratories, staff quarters, the VC’s lodge and the office of the Vice Chancellor.
According to the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Vincent Tenebe, the storm really caused havoc. His words: ”the incident is a natural disaster which cannot be controlled by man even as I thank God that no life was lost. 40 percent of our structures were affected including my office. You can see me hanging around the Faculty of Law before my office is fixed.
“I lost my valuables such as books and official documents. We intimated the State Government and that is why the Governor was here today to see things for himself. He came with his deputy, Engr. Haruna Manu and the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Anthony Jellason.
“The Governor has promised to effect repairs immediately. We are happy because he is a man of his words, we remain grateful to him because he has always been there for us. I pray God to bless him more and more”.
When contacted, the Director, Works of the University, Jerome Vakkai disclosed that the institution lost 10 electric poles and two high tension poles which were completely pulled down by the storm. He maintained that the management was making effort to fix damaged parts.
Addressing Staff and Students of the University shortly after the inspection, the Governor thanked the management and students for the warm reception accorded him promising to effect repairs on the damaged structures.
His Excellency inspecting the damage caused by the rainstorm at the University.
In his words,
”I want to thank you for your love and support to this administration, I sympathised with you over the death of some of your students who were involved in the accident in the republic of Cameroon. Yesterday upon arrival, I visited the hospital to see those on admission. We thank God that doctors are doing their best and they are responding to treatment.
“I have also gone round and seen the devastation done by the rainstorm, it is a major damage. I have quantified the damage and promise to intervene immediately so that students can go back to their lectures. I was told that some of them have started writing their exams and I wish them success”
In a related development, the YEDC offices in Jalingo were not spared by the rainstorm as both the head office and their branch office were badly affected by the storm.
Conducting our correspondent round their offices, the Area Manager, Helbert Rufus Hanawa, stated that their work station was affected damaging 7 computers, 2 giant printers and the most expensive inverter was affected too.
Hanawa also confirmed that over 70 poles of YEDC were affected by the wind storm, saying that Lau, Zing, Jalingo, Mutun-biyu road and Government House feeders were also not spared.
As at the time of filing this report, Hanawa said that they had already restored half of Mutum-biyu road, full restoration of Jalingo and 70 percent of Government House.
Our correspondent reported also that rain storms, accompanied by heavy winds are normal occurrences in Taraba State at the onset of the rainy season, perhaps due to its proximity to the Sahara and Cameroon Mountains.
It would be recalled that Just a week ago, Wukari, in southern Taraba, experienced an unprecedented rainstorm, where it was estimated that 340 homes were destroyed.
Taraba state Governor Darius Ishaku has challenged the rescue Watch team to be proactive in dealing with problems bedevilling people at the grassroots.
Governor Darius Ishaku said this while addressing the rescue Watch team which comprises of the grassroots watch team and Revenue mobilisation team at the government house Jalingo.
He said the Rescue Watch team are to start government intervention through repairs of boreholes and dilapidated schools before full government intervention.
The Governor who received Various reports from the teams decried the attitude of some teachers and nurses in the state who do not show up for work and promised to support the rescue watch team in their quest to conduct a census in all schools in the rural areas including nurses.
Ishaku maintained his doggedness towards the industrialisation of the state and scores the team above fifty percent.
Speaking, State Deputy Governor Haruna Manu, task people at the grassroots to always maintain government property.
He said since it is the responsibility of government to provide facilities to them, can augment it by maintaining them for their use.
The Deputy Governor thanked his boss for his resilience towards the development of the state and solicited prayers from Tarabans to enable the rescue team to succeed in the state.
Also speaking the chief of staff government house administration, Rebo Usman called on contact persons of the rescue watch team to shun truancy in the discharge of their duties.
Rebo Usman who is the Coordinator of the program said since the contact persons are closer to its citizens are expected to report problems facing the people promptly to the various SSAs on grassroots matters or the state secretariat.
He thanked Governor Darius Ishaku for acknowledging their efforts and promised to improve on the task ahead of them.
Various Commissioners who spoke at the meeting commended Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku for his development initiative in their various ministry’s
While it is no longer news that Gov. Darius Ishaku spent the Christmas holiday in his country home, Takum, an aide of his has explained the motive behind the series of meetings the governor held while at home. Ishaku was also at various local governments, meeting with youth, women and other social groups where he encourages an open exchange of ideas.
Ichen Elders pay Courtesy Call to Gov. Ishaku
In a statement, Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Public Affairs, Emmanuel Bello, said the governor is always committed to the people in more ways than one. He said, “this sort of interaction comes to the Governor naturally. He’s people friendly. What the Governor is doing is creating more avenues to directly connect with the people as part of the assurance he gave the state that he would continue to run an open door policy. He is a governor for all and not a few privileged individuals. And the essence of democracy is becoming a servant of the people. He is there for the people and not the other way round.”
Bello said the era when constituents found it difficult to meet their leaders physically is fast fading, stressing that the Governor would continue to provide platforms to reach more groups and individuals directly with the sole aim of hearing from them and meeting immediate needs.
He said, “if not for the arduous demands of office work, the governor wouldn’t mind spending the entire day sitting with the people and hearing from them directly. That’s why even after office, the Governor continues to meet with people deep in the evenings. This helps a great deal with the necessary feedback needed for policy formation. Of course, the people all have elected representatives who are doing their work, but nothing compares with this hands on, on the spot sort of approach the governor prefers. So Tarabians should expect more of such interactive sessions where the governor would get first-hand information from the people.
Gov Ishaku does not believe in the mystification of power where people are shielded from their leaders. He tries to establish personal contact with the electorate as often as possible. This is not just about playing politics but something deep inside of him. He thus would be enhancing on this work ethics to spend more time attending to the people while carrying out the works that need to be done.”
Taraba state Governor, Arc. Darius Ishaku has raised hopes that Nigeria can generate enough electricity to meet her needs and even export the commodity. Ishaku, who was also a former minister of power said it does not take a miracle for that to happen.
Ishaku who spoke through his Senior Special Assistant on Public Affairs, Emmanuel Bello, said the potential for power generation are there with the right policies and will. According to him, electricity is one of the ways the nation can meet all its millennial goals. Ishaku noted further that Nigerians must not give up on this expectation.
He said, “Nigerians should not despair that the forces of darkness have won. Electricity is now something everyone takes for granted in this century. In fact, even smaller countries have overcome this, and I strongly believe we can have our success story too. The potential is there, and in fact, even the political will is now accelerating. As a minister, I saw this, and now as the Governor, I’m even encouraged that we are on the verge of breaking the curse of darkness.”
He noted further that it does not require any prophecy. “If I would also give my prediction like I see many are doing, I want to say that we shall soon get our act right. In Taraba state, we already see how this resolve can become a reality. Our Kashimbilla Dam located in my town Takum, when eventually commissioned, shall add 40 megawatts to what we currently have. I’m excited about the prospect. When I was the minister, I know how much work we put in to make that dream a reality, and it is now only a matter of time. The immediate impact of Kashimbila would be felt by Takum, the entire southern part of the state and neighbouring states. It has great potential too for agriculture, tourism and other expansions.”
400 MEGAWATTS Kashimbila Dam
Nationally, Ishaku said the Mambilla hydro project, also located in Taraba state is another source of hope. He said, ” let me inform Nigerians that the project when eventually completed would add over 3000 megawatts to the nation’s light profile. I believe the will to undertake that project is there, so I have never given up. The era of despondency is over. Nigerians would one day wake up to the fact of constant electricity. ”
Narrating how Taraba is tackling its internal need for power, the Governor observed that he initially paid off the backlog of what was owed the power company. This act, he said, encouraged the sector. “As I speak to you, Taraba people are enjoying a steady supply of light. One of the companies that had practically died on the Mambilla due to lack of power is now back. What we did was to reactivate the Kakara dam and now the tea company there is back to life. Jobs are back too. For me, that is symbolic of what’s possible when good will meets sound policies.”
Ishaku said Taraba is gradually becoming the choice destination for investors looking for a place where electricity is not such a challenge, stressing that Taraba has become the last hope for the country regarding power generation.
By Victoria Danbaba
The Executive Governor of Taraba State, Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku has assured the people of Ussa Local Government Area that he would not go back on his campaign promises to them in view of the Area’s untainted records in the maintenance of peace.
Governor Ishaku gave this assurance yesterday during the special New Year’s service at the Reformed Christian Church of Nigeria, RCCN, Central Lissam.
He reiterated his commitment to fulfilling the campaign promises he made for the construction of the Lissam – Bissaula road and other road networks within the Southern Senatorial Zone.
While explaining the synergy between the Federal and State Government in roads maintenance, he disclosed that when a State Government completes a Federal road, the Federal Government is under obligation to to refund the money spent.
But lamented that for years, the Federal Government has failed to comply and this has been a major setback in the maintenance of roads in the country today.
According to him, the road in question is a Federal Government road and the aforementioned reason has delayed the commencement of work on it but he however promised to tackle the problem headlong this year.
Gov Darius Ishaku Inspecting the 150 Kilometer Pipe Laying he added to the AFDB’S 6.1 Kilometers Coverage
The Governor also assured the people of the provision of pipe born water, stating that the Water Agency has since commenced laying of pipes which would soon get to Lissam.
On the provision of electricity, he said a substation for distribution has been completed to redirect from Kashimbila power plant to ensure sufficient and uninterrupted power supply to the people of Ussa and its environs.
Speaking on the health needs of the people, he promised to complete the building of the Ussa General Hospital and make it functional to relieve them of traveling to Takum General Hospital which according to him is not yet fully equipped.
He commended the people for maintaining peace in Ussa, extending it to the past Caretaker Committee Chairmen who he said worked assiduously to ensure that peace reigns in spite of their ordeal with herds men. In his words, “Ussa has given me peace and I will give her development”.
Prominent among worshipers were, Chief of staff, Hon. Rebo Usman,former Speaker of the Taraba State House of Assembly, Right Honorable Haruna Istifanus Gbana, member representing Ussa in the House of Assembly, Commissioner of justice, Commissioner of Works and Housing,CTC Chairmen, Special Advisers, Senior Special Assistants and other politicians.
By Nick Dugba
Abel Peter Diah
The Taraba state House of Assembly has approved the request of Governor Darius Ishaku for a supplementary Appropriation Bill of N6,694,280,800:00, made up of the sum of N135,759,893:00 as virement, N5,793,601,476:00 as recurrent expenditure and N900,679,324:00 as capital expenditure,in line with Section 121 4(b) of the constitution.
This was as part of the 2016 Supplementary Appropriation Bill sent to the House by His Excellency, Governor Darius Ishaku, on 7th December, 2016.
To this end, the House had referred the Bill to the House Committee on Finance and Appropriation, Chaired by Edward Baraya, PDP, Karim 2 Constituency for further deliberation.
Presenting its report during plenary Wednesday, presided over by Speaker, Peter Abel Diah, the Chairman of the committee, made the following observations.
That “the Supplementary Appropriation Bill is necessary because of the Federal Government policy to support the States with budget support funds. The Taraba state share of the fund is N6,568,283,420:00.
“That there is another refund of N125,997,380 by the NNPC to the State. Thus, Taraba state expects a total of N6,694,280,800:00 and therefore the need for the supplementary Bill” from the Consolidated Revenue Funds of the State.
After the Bill was debated on the floor of the House, it was unanimously adopted by the House and the Speaker then requested the Clerk to communicate the Governor on the new development.
Also, the House had passed into Law the Taraba State Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency Bill 2016. This was sequel to a report of the House Committee on Water Resources and Rural Development.
According to the Speaker, the House had succeeded in setting a record by passing two separate Bills into Law in a single day.
Meanwhile, a heated debate ensued during the consideration of the report of a Bill to establish the Taraba State Inter-religious Council.
The bone of contention was the issue of Chairmanship role to be shared by the two major religions, Christianity and Islam. While some members, especially Bashir Mohammed, APC, Nguroje constituency, favored Co- Chairmanship to be shared between the two faiths, others argued for a Chairman and an Executive Secretary to be shared by the two faiths.
The issue of traditionalists being represented in the Council was also stressed upon if justice was to be served.
At the end after much debate, the issue was amicably resolved with the option of Chairman and Executive Secretary positions to be shared between the two faiths prevailing, as part of amendment of the committee report.
The Bill for a Law to Establish the Taraba State Council for Inter-religious Affairs was sponsored by Charles Maijankai, PDP, Karim 1 constituency, while the House discussed the general principles on the Bill and referred it to the Committee on Justice, Judiciary and Cabinet Affairs, Chaired by Bashir Mohammed, APC, Nguroje constituency.