Lalong Begins Jang’s Probe
Stop making mockery of your seat, Jang tells governor
Seriki Adinoyi in Jos
The Plateau State Government will today inaugurate a six-man commission of inquiry to probe the administration of the immediate past Governor, Jonah David Jang.
A statement signed by the Director of Press to Governor Simon Lalong, Mr. Emmanuel Nanle, said the governor was only exercising “the power conferred on him by Section 2 of the Commissions of Inquiry Law Cap 25 of the Laws of Northern Nigeria 1963, (as applicable to Plateau State) and other relevant laws enabling him in that behalf.”
The commission, which would be chaired by Justice Stephen Adah, is expected to “ascertain all financial transactions, done or entered into by the Government of Plateau State of Nigeria or through any of its ministries, departments, and agencies (MDAs), or official acting in its name from May 29, 2007 to May 29, 2015.”
Other terms of reference include; ascertaining and establishing all financial allocations, funds, grants or monetary interventions and revenues which accrued to or in the name of the Government of Plateau State of Nigeria. MDAs, officials or agents from the Federal Government of Nigeria or any international institutions or donor agencies from May 29, 2007 to May 29, 2015; to ascertain and establish all loans granted to or obtained by the state government through any of its MDAs, and the purpose for which such loans were obtained and whether the loans were used for such purpose.
The commission is also expected to ascertain whether any property belonging to the state government or any of its MDAs, parastatals and institutions which were sold or in any way concessioned to any person(s), or institution(s), by any government ministry, MDAs, or officials between May 29, 2007 and May 29, 2015, followed due process or procedure and whether the proceeds of such sale or concession were paid into appropriate government coffers.
Other members of the commission are Mrs. Bibiana Bawa, Aliyu Sangei, Prof Ekoja B. Ekoja, Samuel Onu Agamah and Alhaji Sani Yahaya Mavo, who serves as secretary of the commission.
But reacting to the new of his probe, Jang appealed to Lalong to always conduct himself like a statesman that he is expected to be, urging him to stop making mockery of the governorship seat that the people of the state have entrusted in his hand.
The former governor who spoke through his media aide, Mr. Clinton Garuba, advised his successor not to usurp the powers of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in his quest to demonise him.
Lalong had expressed worry that in spite of the many allegations he had brought before the EFCC against Jang, the commission has refused to take any action.
But Jang said: “Critical agencies of the government like the EFCC are not run by infantile whims or impulsive wishes, which is why the sterling record of performance as exemplified in the state by Senator Jang could not keep him beyond some few hours at the EFCC when he was invited sometimes ago, and it would remain so even if Lalong himself were to head the commission.”
He described as outrageous the claim by Lalong that he has bought over all journalists in the state, noting that he was not in any way disturbed by what the media would report because his record as governor of the state stands him out as the best the state has ever produced since the inception of democracy.
Clinton observed that “each time Lalong faces the reality of his accidental governorship, he blames the former governor, but this time, the EFCC and journalists in the state have made his list.
“At a time Lalong’s cluelessness, unpreparedness, and rudderless style of governance is ever becoming more obvious as a testament to the glowing achievements of the man he now chose to mortify, it is not surprising that his recent outburst was at an airport, having just returned from a record ninth fruitless, baseless, meaningless, and wasteful foreign trip since he become governor.
“His escapist attempt at delusion, carefully scripted and acted to shift attention from his vacation funded by public funds to China cannot be masked by one of his laughable conjectures. How else can he justify using taxpayers’ money to satisfy his holidaying needs, if he doesn’t invent a convenient scapegoat?”
He further noted: “Those who have identified the burnt Jos main market as a conduit to siphon scarce resources needed to salvage citizens from untold hardship have a lot of buying to do so that the right questions may be kept from the people. Otherwise, someone has to explain how consultancy fee for the proposed rebuilding of Jos main market alone costs about N250million, even though the people were sold a sensational yet misleading story.”