Executive Secretary, Taraba State Post Primary Education Board, Mr. David Mailafiya
Executive Secretary of the Taraba State Post Primary Education Board, Mr. David Mailafiya has affirmed that Governor Darius Ishaku deserves another shot at the Government House considering his remarkable reforms in the academic sector of the State.
Mr. Mailafiya stated that the education sector has received massive boost from the State Government hence the giant strides it had made since His Excellency came to office.
He made the disclosure recently in Jalingo during an interactive session with journalists stressing that the Governor deserves praise for his innovative work in education and taking Taraba to a new level in the committee of states in the country.
“I must confess that we have never had it so good in this sector. We were nowhere near the level we have attained before His Excellency came on board. But within the last few years we have come to be among states that can boast of massive reforms and support from their Governor.
“It is indeed a thing of joy and our Governor deserves another shot at the Government house to enable him consolidate on the gains so far. He probably must have conceived it in his heart before he became our governor. What he has done is quite unprecedented and I believe this is just a tip of the iceberg”.
He revealed that the recruitment of teachers by the government and the capacity building programme initiatives put in place has yielded dividends.
“ We have covered a lot of grounds from the inputs of government. Recruitment of teachers and training programs organized for them is highly commendable. We will not rest but continue to keep the burner ablaze and make sure we keep up the highest standards of quality teaching in our schools. Remember that an educated society is an informed society” he stressed.
The Vice Chairman North East zone of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, Amb. Emmanuel Njiwah, has kicked against the Not-Too-Young-To-Run Bill which is awaiting presidential assent, describing it as unnecessary and discriminatory.
In an exclusive interview with our Correspondent, Njiwah stated that the youth had the advantage by virtue of their number and could emancipate themselves if they wished without the backing of any law.
“Every Nigerian that has reached the age of voting should be allowed to contest. I feel the Bill is unnecessary, it discriminates against the youth. The President of France is 39 and there is no Law for young men to run for presidency in France. The youths are free and the majority, they should vote themselves irrespective of any law“, he posited.
Njiwah who contested for the presidency position during the botched third republic at age 42, pointed out that the challenge the youths would have to overcome if eventually they got to power was in the area of decision making.
He regretted the attitude of the youth towards nowadays politics and therefore advised them to pursue positive values.
“The younger ones go for money. If you don’t make it, they will laugh at you but for us, we went for people and I think it stopped with my generation because the younger ones today go for money. I ran for governorship and never had any godfather.
“I never went for any body’s money and I have made impact. For those coming behind me, I pray they take the path of sincerity, honesty, patience and they should be able to pursue exactly what they can do and the society will be able to identify them in their various exploits and locate them effectively”, he advised.
SA Political Matters to Governor Ishaku
As Nigeria approaches the polls in 2019, the political space in Taraba is charging up with the display of posters of aspirants. Besides, the myriad of security challenges in the State could affect the vote itself and will certainly be a big issue on the campaign trail.
Hon. Abubakar Bawa, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Political Matters, in this interview with our Reporter, bore his mind on these issues and more.
As Special Adviser on Political Matters, what are the chances of Gov. Darius Ishaku in the 2019 General Elections?
Bawa: Taraba State has recorded a lot of achievements during Gov. Ishaku’s administration and what people expect of any government is development which so far the Governor has achieved in Taraba state.
Tarabans are ready to vote for him again and there is no two ways about that. The aspect I want to mention is that PDP as a party is working very fast to make sure that the name of our party remains indelible. In Taraba state, we just have PDP and others. So there is no doubt about winning elections and for PDP, up till now we don’t have any other candidate apart from Gov. Darius.He remains our sole candidate.
Looking around Jalingo city, you will see posters of mostly opposition aspirants, with only Gov. Ishaku from the PDP. Does that suggest that the governor has been endorsed by the party as its sole candidate for 2019?
Bawa: Well, posters do not mean contest! There are so many 419 people who would just put their posters all over the city while in real sense, have no money to even buy forms to contest. All I know is, PDP has its own formula and their formula is that the seat of the governor now is reserved for southern Taraba. So nobody is going to contest from Central or Northern zone. He has to come from the Southern zone and so far we have only Gov. Darius and it is not mandatory he is the only person. But if somebody is willing to contest, we cannot say no, because this is politics.
We are approaching 2019 and the security situation in the state is quite uncertain, how do you think the situation can affect the elections in 2019?
Bawa: Well, honestly speaking, the Governor has preached to people that “give me peace and I will give you development”, but you see there are so many people that are not interested in seeing that peace reigns in Taraba state. There are so many devils and when they are doing their devilish work, you can’t say no to them. But we that love peace, will try to preach to the people to live in harmony. But it is very unfortunate that some people are trying to throw this States into a state of chaos and trying to disturb the work of this Government. But I want to assure you that they will not succeed.
The Continuous Voter Registration is on, what is your appeal to the public?
Bawa: That is their right! You see we are always telling people to get their voters card because that would make sure that you have the mandate to choose whoever you want. But if you don’t have a voters card, that means you can’t vote. In fact,it was very encouraging when I was opportuned to see some people registering at Gashaka, Bali and Sardauna.
Taraba state Coordinator, PDP Youth Vanguard, Hon. Sunday Yusuf
The Taraba State Coordinator of the PDP Youth Vanguard, Sunday Yusuf, has backed Gov. Darius Ishaku’s stand on impunity and imposition of Candidates in the electoral process.
He stated that it was the right thing to do and that such a stand meant that the party had learnt from its past mistakes.
Yusuf who stressed that the Governor’s stand was long overdue and was what they had waited for made the assertion on Wednesday in an interview granted to media men in his office in Jalingo.
In his words,
“I want to boldly say that Darius is the right man for him to stand his ground and say that the era of impunity is over. He has seen that what brought about the downfall of PDP both at the federal and state levels is impunity, the lack of internal democracy. The only way to come back and reclaim power both at the center and fringes is to entrench internal democracy “, he stated.
The youth leader who recently won election to the seat of the coordinator, however assured that PDP youths in the State would key into the new stand as well as sensittize the youths at the grassroots to go for candidates that can deliver at all levels.
Throwing his weight behind the not-too-young- to-run Bill which scaled through at the National Assembly he disclosed that, “I think that this will give us a sense of belonging. As a youth, you can be an SA, Legislative Aide, LGA Chairman or even a Councillor.
“But how do you get there; you can go back to school to get more credentials, develop yourself, add value to yourself so that when positions of responsibility come, you are ready”, he added.
Yusuf revealed that he had come with a mission of rebranding the PDP Youth Wing. According to him, gone were the days when youths were used as thugs to disrupt elections and cause mayhem.
He stressed that,
“We have laid down plans to bring the Youths across the 16 LGAs and the 2 SDAs together. We have started with campaigns and sensitization.I have set up an ad-hoc committee to bring out modalities to set up the youth vanguard in our various LGAs, wards and districts”, he concluded.
The Executive Secretary, Taraba state Christian pilgrims welfare board Mr. Levi Kanja has commended Taraba Governor Darius Ishaku over his unrelenting quest to bolster the faith of Christians through sponsorship to Israel for the holy pilgrimage.
Taraba 2017 Pilgrimage
According to him, the recent pilgrimage was a huge success as was previous due to the number of Tarabans who embarked on the trip to the holy land. “I want to seize this opportunity to thank our Governor for counting it worthy to sponsor a large number of Tarabans to Israel for the pilgrimage. It was a very successful exercise and of course, it strengthened the faith of those that were part of the group” he narrated.
Mr. Kanga revealed that Taraba pilgrims conducted themselves very well as there was no ugly incident involving any of the pilgrims. “We had over four hundred pilgrims this year and yet there was no single incident of abscondment as reported in a few states in our own camp was a huge achievement. Our return trip was equally successful and we return all glory to God for giving us a Governor whose heartbeat is tilted toward peace, prosperity, and development of our dear state. We are indebted to him” he maintained.
The executive secretary called on Christian faithful to continue to pray for the peace of Taraba so as to enable the government develops the state.
Sometimes, one wonders if religious instructions are only valuable at Church or Mosque or they are to constantly guide our general lifestyle. Everyone knows that God says we should give thanks for everything. Why is it not the case with some Tarabans?
Some people complain at every available instance. When you look critically at Governor Ishaku’s government, you will see so many things to thank God for. By doing so, God will use him to do more for us, don’t you think? In case you don’t know, here are 16 things Tarabans should thank God for the Governor.
- Supportive Wife: Many Governors are not as lucky as Taraba to have a first lady that is highly educated, disciplined, God-fearing and a great achiever. Unless you have been living under a rock, you must have seen, heard or experienced one of the Governor’s wife achievements that have touched thousands of lives and greatly complements her husband’s.
From discovering the Ndola people and helping them to get a development area, to interventions in skills acquisitions, cancer, and drug abuse campaigns among several others, Taraba Governor’s wife fits the exact description of a rare gem that other states would gladly pay a fortune to own. God gave us this great gift. We should be grateful.
- Strategic Governor: It is no doubt that Governor Ishaku is a strategic Governor. Strategy simply means a plan of action designed to achieve a long-term aim. While others may be thinking of short-term achievements, Governor Ishaku is thinking of what Taraba should be in 10, 20, 30 and 50 years ahead, years after his terms in office. Some of the examples of his strategic projects include:
a.) Current water project that should last around 35 years before another major expansion.
b.) Partnership with Dangote for Sugar manufacturing.
c.) Functional airport and
d.) Partnership with several other organizations for agriculture, mining, tourism among others.
No wonder Rosalynn Carter says “a great leader takes people where they don’t necessarily want to go, but ought to be”.
- Vocal Governor: When it comes to speaking up and taking a positive stand on important life-threatening issues, Governor Ishaku has always done that. Can you remember his stand on the anti-open grazing bill and the recent Mining week organized by miners association in Abuja where he boldly expressed displeasure over mining title holders from Abuja who engage in mining in states without permission or notifying authorities?.
From sacking of Chiefs who seized lands belonging to IDPs to gradually eliminating ghost workers and ghost schools, Governor Ishaku has never dragged his feet about serious issues that affect lives. Chris Brady is right when he said “No guts, no story.”
- Peace Loving Governor – The Governor has created an enabling environment for dialogue. No matter where the problem is coming from, he always seems to have this natural ability to know how to bring people together to settle their differences.
From working with the Benue Governor to settle boundary issues to setting up Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the Mambilla crises, and several other interventions, Governor Ishaku has always never fallen the hands of Tarabans when it comes to Security. No one says it better than Albert Einstein’s “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.”
5. Meticulous Use of Resources: After inheriting state debts worth billions of naira and meeting a completely empty treasury, Governor Ishaku did not enjoy the financial abundance that the previous administrations enjoyed. Everything was there to discourage him from venturing into projects that will make any meaningful impact.
If not for the meticulous use of resources, the Governor would hardly have recorded any tangible achievement that would affect lives. In just two years, he is rated as a top performing Governor. Is this not what to thank God for?
6. Salaries: First there was the issue of ghost workers, then the issue of salaries slashing, then all kinds of frauds. The Governor set up various committees to curtail anomalies and has done everything humanly possible to ensure that every Taraba Civil Servant gets his or her salary when due.
According to him, he has also been a salary earner and knows the pain and frustration that comes with not getting your monthly payments. Unless money is not released from Abuja on time, Governor Ishaku has never wasted time in approving and paying salaries. We have several states that don’t enjoy this. Is this not something again to be grateful for?
7. Debt: Everyone knows that when you don’t pay off your debt, you become a slave to the lender. The Governor has been reducing the state’s debt. This has gone a long way to help the state to self-sufficiency once all debts are paid. This is one of the silent achievements that hardly go noticed but have a huge impact on the general economy of the state. We would have been dancing to a different music by now if this was not attended to.
8. Internally Generated Revenue: The amount of the internally generated revenue of any state determines how powerful that state is, in relation to other states, and is one of the factors that determine what allocation a state gets from Abuja. Governor Ishaku has caught this vision and has been working very hard to increase the IGR of the state in order to fund governance and services in years to come.
He has revived the highland tea which can be sold worldwide, established one of the most powerful greenhouses in Nigeria and several upcoming projects. He even established the Revenue Monitoring Team, an arm of the Rescue Watch that ascertains the internally generated revenue of all government systems in order to block leakages and increase revenue. This has no doubt added some extra millions to government coffers.
9. Grassroots Governor: Most people know that most projects in this government enjoy a reasonable balance between Rural and Urban areas, especially in the areas of Water, Health, Power supply, Roads and several others. How many governments have achieved this feat? Let’s be grateful.
10. Rescue Watch: Rescue Watch is one of the programs anyone will call an administrative genius. It is structured in such a way that the three arms of government, along with all Ministries and Agencies, Local Governments and Traditional rulers are brought together to tackle issues across the state with all hands on deck. Shhh, let’s not tell the outside world much about this. They will repackage this and sell it back to us. The Rescue Watch can make the G20 nations call an emergency summit. Are we not grateful that this genius project is originating from Taraba state?
11. Touched Several MDAs: The Governor’s Projects and impact cuts across several Ministries and agencies. From providing counterpart funding, completing delayed projects, employment, empowerment and creating new projects, the Governor has touched nearly every MDA with his unique achievements. We should appreciate God for this too.
12. Bonuses: Several thousand pilgrims from both religions have been airlifted to the holy lands for the past two years. He has been faithfully providing foodstuff and beef during Christian and Muslim festivities. Governor Ishaku has made Taraba the envy of other states. He deserves a pat on the back. This is really cool.
13. Capital projects: Several noticeable and unnoticeable capital projects have been going on all over the state. Since the projects do not affect lives directly, like employment, salaries or bonuses do, many people think he is not doing anything tangible.
When we take statistics of before office and after assumption of office, we will fill up several books of his achievements within two and a half years. From the construction of roads, digitization of TTV and TSBS, schools, hospitals, water and several others, the capital projects by this administration can speak for themselves.
14. Not religiously biased: Any discerning person that cares to ask the simplest question will easily know that the Governor is not religiously biased. Some of his closest aides are not of the same faith with him. According to him, he does not even give any religion financial support secretly. He treats both equally in everything. Anyone accusing him of religious biasedness is not being fair at all.
15. Track record: Governor Ishaku is doing several things well because he has track record. As someone who managed a business, has two Masters Degrees and a PhD in view, been a University lecturer, widely travelled and oversaw three Federal Ministries as a Minister under the previous regime, Governor Ishaku has enough track record that makes him a dynamic leader.
16. Counterpart Funding: Despite the lean resources that come into the state every month, Governor Ishaku has scored very high in the provision of counterpart funding that initiated several foreign interventions in the state. Most times, Taraba is usually among the best three to provide counterpart funding.
That’s it for now. If you have any reason to criticize, you can do it and be heard. Check out three kinds of criticsm to get the Governor’s attention. As you can see, giving thanks is more profitable than complaints…If you get any occasion to complain, simply look up one of these areas and thank God instead.