Angry Constituents Assault  Federal Lawmaker in Taraba

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By Wole Ayodele in Jalingo

A member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Garba Hamman Julde, representing Bali-Gassol federal constituency of Taraba State narrowly escaped being lynched at the weekend by his constituents at Bali, the constituency  headquarters.

The incident, which occurred at Central Primary School in Bali where Garbage organised an event to distribute 11 motorcycles and a vehicle to the ward executives and local government chairman of APC in Bali, saw the lawmaker pested with stones, satchets of pure water and other dangerous objects.

It took the timely intervention of security operatives who were on ground to prevent the incident from degenerating as the lawmaker had to be whisked away after sustaining minor bruises.

Citing failed representation and abandonment of his constituency for more than two years, the enraged constituents, who chanted war songs as they pressed forward to get hold of the lawmaker, vowed to do everything possible to ensure he is not re-elected in the forthcoming election. 

Trouble started after Garba ended his speech on the rostrum and was making way to present keys of the motorcycles to the beneficiaries when the youths started chanting in Hausa ‘ba mu so’ ‘ba mu so’.

With the atmosphere already charged, the youths started hauling stones, sand and pure water satchets at him even as they made attempts to lay their hands on him before policemen quickly formed a ring around him and whisked him away from the podium.

Speaking with THISDAY on the incident, Musa Sandirde, one of the constituents who witnessed the assault on the lawmaker, said the people were disenchanted with the lawmaker abandoning them for over two years and have resolved to ensure he does not return to the National Assembly come 2019.

Also speaking, one of the local government  party executives, Ibrahim Daka said Garba had been missing for over two years only for him to surface to distribute motorcycles and a car to the ward and local government executives of the party. 

According to him, “He has completely abandoned the people that sent him to Abuja. For more than two years, he went missing, only for him to show up this weekend to say he was presenting 11 motorcycles and one car to ward and local government party chairmen.

“He did that because election is here and they are the people who will serve as delegates to elect party flag bearers again. But the people he abandoned turned against him and showed their anger. How can you abandon the people and come here to give bicycles to a few people? We are not happy with him and we made our position clear to him,” he added.

Meanwhile, THISDAY gathered that a planned distribution of some items at Mutum Biyu, headquarters of Gassol Local Government has  been put on hold to prevent a repeat of the Bali incident.

All efforts to speak with Garba or  his legislative aides proved abortive as journalists were denied access to him and he refused to respond to calls on his mobile phones.