Taraba governor, Arc. Darius Ishaku on Thursday urged the people of the State to change their attitude towards public infrastructure and protect them for the good of the State.
Ishaku made the call during a town hall meeting on Taraba State water sector reform held at the Gym Hall, Jolly Nyame Stadium.
The Governor noted that his administration in conjunction with African Development Bank (AFDB) was making huge investment in the water sector to meet the water need of the people of the State, which is a valuable resource for human life.
Gov. Ishaku who pledge to support the Taraba State Water Supply Agency (TSWA) through the deployment of technology and innovations to achieve efficiency promised to review existing laws to cater for the new outlook and reforms in the water sector of the State.
According to him, a Board of Directors would soon be constituted to give policy direction to the water agency and that management of the State Water Supply Agency will also be repositioned for better performance.
Earlier, Commissioner for Water Resources, Barr. Emmanuel Gowon commended the Governor for breaking the jinx of water scarcity in Jalingo and for his commitment in repositioning the water supply agency for better service delivery.
He told the gathering that the Governor has on assumption of office restored water supply to major towns and semi-urban centres across the State, in addition to consistent release of funds to ensure constant water supply to the people of the State.
General Manager of the State Water Board, Engr. Musa Siam on his part said the board was working with Nairobi City Water Agency in Kenya to train at least 50 youths from the State on how to collect revenue and maintain the water pipes and outlets.
Musa added that the board was working on a possibility of a technology transfer from Kenya where people use their ATM cards to buy water, thereby reducing high cash volume at water selling points.
The Governors of Taraba and Benue States have agreed to find a lasting solution to the crisis in the two divides so that people within the affected areas can go about their normal businesses unmolested.
The meeting was held at Moon village in Kwande local government area of Benue State, which lies along the border areas of the two states.
In their separate speeches, the two Governors, Darius Dickson Ishaku of Taraba state and Samuel Ortom of Benue state, called on the people to remain calm as efforts are being made to find a lasting and agreeable solution that will be beneficial to both states.
Governor Ishaku in his speech, dwelled on the importance of peace and peaceful coexistence among the tribes that are resident in the area, pointing out that, they are brothers and sisters that have to imbibe the spirit of give and take which is a necessary ingredient for peaceful and harmonious coexistence.
He called on the TIVs, the Jukuns and Fulanis to be patient as he and his Benue counterpart are determined to solve the lingering misunderstandings peacefully, beginning from Kashimbila, particularly Moon, Akwana and Ukum among others.
Darius Ishaku maintained that they are operating on the same page most especially now that the country is about to embrace cattle ranching, citing Chile as an example where farmers and grazers relate peacefully without any form of friction.
He revealed that Taraba state would soon liaise with Federal Ministry of Agriculture to bring improved grasses to the state so that both grazers and farmers can take advantage of and it would be planted in Mambila plateau in Taraba state.
Governor Darius Ishaku told the gathering that, the demarcation is just for administrative convenience and tasks the two sides to be law abiding and respect constituted authority not minding which side of the divide they belong.
On his part, the Governor of Benue state, Samuel Ortom said as Governors that have the interest of their subject at heart, he is confident that lasting peace will be brokered so the people can once again experience enduring peace.
Governor Ortom maintained that Moon would remain in Benue state while Chanchangi will remain in Taraba state and called on those propagating the return of Moon to Taraba and Chanchangi to Benue to desist from such agitations that do not mean well for the people of the two States.
He also stressed that no alteration will be made on the existing land demarcation which dates back to 1920s.
He maintained that proper adjustment of the boundary would be worked out taking into cognisance their similarities and otherwise as well as involving the National Boundary Commission for its success.
Speaking further, Governor Ortom said very soon a meeting would be convened with farmers, herdsmen and stakeholders with a view to bringing the crisis and other unforeseen problems in the area in its totality to an amicable end.
The Benue state Governor added that ranching will be introduced so as to avert the lingering crisis between farmers and grazers and stressed that ranching is now the best practice in the rearing of animals the world over, but however called for patience and understanding from the farmers and grazers so that at the end, an acceptable modality would be worked out so that they can relate peacefully which will eventually translate into bringing to an end the senseless loss of lives and the wanton destruction of property.
Samuel Ortom equally said, there must be an arrangement that will guarantee our people to live together peacefully, devoid of trespass, encroachment that often lead to clashes which the end result is the maiming of people and the destruction of property, pointing out that when normalcy is returned and records are put straight, the Federal Government would be contacted to come to the aid of people that have been affected by the crisis.
Accordingly, he tasks all to respect constituted authority not minding which side of the divide one belongs, either Taraba or Benue state.
Also speaking, the Sole Administrator of Kwande local government, Hon. Orngu Daniel said farmers in Moon district hardly go to their farms for the fear being attacked which has made life unbearable for the people of Moon village.
Orngu Daniel disclosed that for about five years now, children of school age in Moon district have not been going to schools because most of them are seeking refuge in some parts of the two states, pointing out that most of the schools have been destroyed as a result of the crisis which spanned for over five years.
The Sole Administrator pleaded with the two Governors to come to the rescue of the people of Moon and other villages who have been dislodged from their ancestral land to come back and live a peaceful life like other people in the two states.
In his speech, the Aku Uka of Wukari, Dr. Shekarau Angyu Masa Ibi Kuvyon Il, who is the Chairman Councils of Chiefs, Taraba state called on the Jukuns, Tivs and Fulani to find a lasting solution to the problems so that the people can go about their normal businesses without any form of intimidation or harassment from any of the tribes.
Dr. Shekarau Masa Ibi further tasks the people to support the two Governors so that they can restore peace in the affected communities and as well contribute maximally to the development and growth of the two states.
In his contribution, the representative of the Councils of chiefs, Benue state, Chief Sule Abanga posited that all the three tribes have suffered from the crises and call for sincere and holistic approach to resolving the impasse which has lingered for so long making lives unbearable for the three tribes.
Taraba State Government has reaffirmed its resolve to meticulously pursue the success of the Rescue Mission aimed at giving a new lease of livelihood to the citizens of the State.
This was disclosed to the Government House Press Crew in an interview by the Chief of Staff, Government Administration to Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku, Hon. Rebo Usman shortly after inspecting the first batch of equipment at the Ministry of Cooperatives and Poverty Alleviation meant for Rescue Mission first batch of trainees.
Rebo Usman maintained that the focus of the present administration in the State is to make all Tarabans useful to themselves by engaging them into skills that will translate into self empowerment and consequently, contributing to the economic development of the State.
He explained that, the women and youths empowerment programme cuts across all strata of the society with emphasis on both literates and illiterates as well as the physically challenged with a view to giving all the opportunity to participate in the building of a new Taraba, that all its people are vibrant and productive.
The Chief of Staff further revealed that, the first batch of three hundred and thirty-six (336) trainees is a litmus test to seeing how the people of the State will accept and embrace the scheme, positing that the programme has been widely accepted, hence the need to fine tuning with a view to bringing in more people into the programme.
Rebo Usman mentioned that the first batch will be rounding up their training by the end of the month and immediately after their graduation, the second set will take up, which is expected to be enlarged with a view engaging more persons than first batch which captured only ten areas with only two representation from each ward across the State.
The equipment inspected by the Chief of Staff were industrial sewing machines and embroidery machines totalling one hundred and forty-eight (148) each, meant for people that are into fashion and designs while the second batch of the consignments are expected into the the State next week.
The Chief of Staff, Hon. Rebo Usman was conducted round the equipment by the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Cooperatives and Poverty Alleviation, Mallam Lawan Yakubu whose Ministry is saddled with the tasks of effective supervision and monitoring of both the trainers and trainees.
Taraba State Governor, Arc. Darius Dickson Ishaku recently met with youths representatives from Southern Taraba.
The meeting which took place at the Takum Government Lodge, was primarily aimed at fine tuning ways of improving on the well being of the youths.
Governor Darius Ishaku who expressed joy in meeting with the youths stated that, it is God’s will that he celebrate this special and unique day with them, saying that, this particular occasion provides an opportunity to come together to talk with a view to moving the State to an enviable height.
He maintained that it is always good to hear from the youths and to work out modalities so that government can assist them realise their God given potentials.
The Governor reaffirmed his desire to put youths in a vintage position in his administration, and pointed out that, though the State and the Country is faced with financial difficulty, he will do his best to improve their livelihood.
Responding on the issue of a State Library, Darius Ishaku said it is unfortunate that, most of the schools in the State are in very critical and in bad shapes, as he rhetorically asked, which one takes priority, Is it fixing the school or having a library without functional and vibrant schools.
He however said, his administration is trying its best to see that schools are rebuilt and put in their proper shapes which will then guarantee putting up a standard State Library.
Governor Darius Ishaku lamented that, the problem and constraints of the State Government is lack of funds, unlike the past government that had enough stressing that, the story today is different, “the little we have, will be judiciously managed to ensure prompt payment of salaries as the State is a Civil Service State”.
Darius Ishaku revealed that he has paid off all salaries of Civil Servants in the State and further disclosed that anyone who has not been paid should go and find out whether he or she was not rightly employed.
He said he is optimistic that, with plans already strategised, very soon Taraba State University will be comparable in standard to any University in the country so that its graduates can be employed anywere in the country.
The Governor mentioned that roads are going to take priority, but one at a time, beginning with Mararaban Baissa in Donga to Kurmi up to Abong road, then others may be attended to shortly.
Similarly, Darius Ishaku informed the youths that the Jalingo Garba Chede road constructed by the immediate past administration, which is a Federal Government road, the money is yet to be refunded to the state and expressed optimism that, soon the FG will respond to that.
Governor Darius Ishaku said he is aware of water shortages in Wukari and environs and said he is working assiduously to tackle it.
Governor Darius Ishaku was visibly happy when the youths acknowledged the potency of the empowerment programmes in the LGAs and disclosed that, the first batch will be graduating in January and the second set will start immediately and said those that were not fortunate to make the first set should get ready to be part of the second set.
Speaking on the Green House project in Jalingo, the Governor said, is going to meet vegetable needs of the State and beyond and will equally serve as a training ground for students of the State University and the State College of Agriculture including youths that wants to be trained in vegetable farming, so that, they will be engaged productively.
The Governor added that, the Lissam Vocational Training School will soon be renovated so that it can serve as a training center for youths as he encouraged the youths to imbibe virtues of hardwork.
He further disclosed that very soon the State would be needing the services of about 1200 engineers and said he is not sure if the State indigenes will be able to meet up.
Reacting to the issue of scholarship, the Governor said he wouldn’t want to talk about what he may not be able to do, explaining that, fund is the major problem, priority must be given to what the people desires most.
The Governor further assured the youths that, his biggest nightmare was peace and said now that peace is gradually returning, he will definitely develop the State saying, is a promise that must be fulfilled and to those with pockets of problems in their areas they will not be able to benefit from the developmental strides of his administration.
Darius Ishaku pleaded with the youths to embrace peace so that they can live peacefully with one another pointing out that, “we are all created differently and we must learn to accept and accommodate each other so that, we may be able to conform with the teachings of the holy books”.
Governor Darius Ishaku used the forum to encourage students in the State to take their studies serious so that they can make good grades and become gainfully employed.
In their separate speeches, from all the youth representing each Local Government that make up Southern Taraba, they unanimously thanked the State Governor for the level of development he had so far brought to their door steps, particularly, women and youths empowerment programme.
They however pleaded with the Governor to look into issues bothering their areas such as lack of motorable roads, water and insufficient electricity.
While the President National Association of Jukun Student NAJUS, Comrade Hopes also appealed to the Governor to build a library in the zone which will serve as a center for learning during the holidays, and suggested that, more science oriented graduates be engaged in the zone and the State at large.
He however pleaded with the Governor to come to the aid of the students by resuscitating the payment of scholarship to indigenes of the State.
The Governor was also honoured with the title of ‘Sarkin Matasan Taraba’ for his contibution in peace building and development of the State.
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.
Taraba State Governor, Arc. Darius Dickson Ishaku yesterday admonished the Coordinators of NGADA and Yangtu Development Areas as well as the Chairman and members of the Taraba state Judicial Service commission to be responsive to the needs of the people.
Executive Governor, Taraba State.
Governor Darius Ishaku said this at the Government House Exco Chamber, and challenged them to render services to humanity by carrying all along in the discharge of their official duties devoid of any form of sentiment.
Darius Ishaku tasks the coordinator of NGADA that, this is the right time to work for the people by helping them, because the area is lacking in all the basic necessities of life and categorically told him that, if he doesn’t help them God will judge him because they are indeed deprived people.
Similarly, the Governor charged the Coordinator of Yangtu to be proactive and innovative and inject new ideas that will derive the Development area to realize its potentials by making the people to appreciate him and thrive to move the area to greater heights by being transparent and fair in the discharge of his assignment.
The Governor admonished the Coordinators of NGADA and Yangtu to immediately key into the rescue mission of his administration in order to fast track growth and promote peace and harmonious coexistence among the people.
To the Chairman and members of the Taraba State Specialist Hospital Board, Governor Darius Ishaku tasks them to work round the clock with a view to generating ideas that will enhance speedy turn around of the hospital so that it would be able to address the health needs of the people of the state.
He beckoned on the specialist Hospital Board to wake up and improve on their services, explaining that, there are inadequate Hospitals across the state and reiterated his administration’s determination to rehabilitate and equip the hospitals cutting across the three geopolitical zones of the state and posited that, it is the availability of modern equipment that makes a health facility a hospital.
The Governor stated thus, “I wish to use this opportunity to urge all of you to take this responsibility with all sense of seriousness. As fresh members of the Resuce team you are charged to bring new ideas on board that will help speed up the growth of the mission, I urge you to get a copy of the Rescue Agenda, which will guide and help you to understand the workings of the project, it will also contribute meaningfully to the success of the movement and the goals the mission intends to achieve throughout the state,” he stressed.
Accordingly, Governor Darius Ishaku told the Chairman and members of the State Judicial Service Commission sworn in that they have a very special responsibility to handle, most especially, in ensuring that justice is speedily dispense and with utmost fairness to all manner of people devoid nepotism or favoritism and reminded them to uphold the integrity judiciary.
The Governor maintained that, Taraba state is blessed in all spheres and there is, the urgent need to wake up and effectively manage the God given natural resources judiciously, stressing that, Taraba will be a great place if we wake up to our responsibility by supporting government to explore and harness the abundant natural resources.
He said by next year the Rescue Agenda will graduate lots of youths who have been empowered in varieties of skills and asserted that his administration will keep doing it until the entire youths in the state are actively engaged in ventures that will sustain them, emphasizing that, he is poised in his drive to sustaining peace and will work more assiduously until peace is permanent in all the corners of the state.
Darius Ishaku opined that Taraba state alone can produce enough rice that will be able meet the country’s needs, that, the Highland Tea is the number one beverage in the country and effort is now tilted towards coming up good publicity that will market the product nationally and internationally.
Similarly, Governor Darius Ishaku said modality worked out on the government and people of the state will be actively involved in Mining activities and explained that the state at the moment is harmoniously engaging the Federal Government proactively which will be beneficial to the three tiers of government.
Responding on behalf of the new appointees, Rtd. Grand Ghadi Justice Mamman Salai Judicial Service Commission JSC, appreciated God for giving the opportunity serve the people and Government of the state.
Retired Ghadi Salais assured the Governor that they will discharge their duties effectively and efficiently and in accordance with laws of the land as spelled out and stressed that they will perform functions with absolute humility to the rule of law.
He told the Governor that his speech was heart touching and said he believed that all the appointees will ponder on it and as well put it all into action and work for the success of this state and told him to go and sleep with his eyes closed with the promise that they will never fail him.
Those sworn in were Rev Joseph Nagombe Coordinator NGADA Development Area, Mr. Nuhu Tsuki Coordinator Yangtu Development Area and Justice Josephine Tuktur as Chairman Of Taraba Judicial Service Commission with one of Tarabas illustrious sons Damien Dodo SAN as member and Taraba state specialist Hospital Board has Dr Stephen Kitchener chairman with the CMO of the Specialist Hospital as a Member.