I read with dismay the interview granted by former Gombe gubernatorial aspirant, Alhaji Inuwa Yahaya and published in the LEADERSHIP of Thursday, May 3, 2018 and it was clear that he still feels sore from the beating he got from Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo at the polls in 2015.
I read the whole chat with some sense of amusement, until Inuwa began his campaign by trying to paint Dankwambo black and score some unnecessary brownie points. In the end, though, I understood it all as politics and part of his game-plan. He has waited almost eight long years and can’t wait to get to the polls to defeat – in his opinion – whoever the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) comes up with as its guber candidate in the promising state.
First off, it is strange that almost no one has come out to talk about how ‘poorly’ Dankwambo has run the state, only for his political opponent in the state to come out with a sad tale of how Dankwambo has run the state aground and how he, in his own wisdom, could not explain how he would ‘redeem’ the state, because it would take him (in his words) “more than 20 or 30 minutes). How typically laughable of the clueless one.
Talban Gombe’s achievements and contributions to the development of the state was part of the strongest points for campaign and still is a reference by his party, the PDP. His government has long been referred to as “the pride of the PDP” and the blueprint for governors all over the federation as the “face of good governance in Nigeria” and, suddenly, up pops Yahaya who though is entitled to his opinion, failed to lace them with facts.
Besides the fact that Dankwabo has won a slew of accolades of his frugality and his efficient system of governance, it is on record that he rehabilitated and reticulated pipelines’ extension to Kwami, Gadam etc. and extended water supply to Baure, Dangar and many more communities – this is not forgetting the construction of an earth dam at Boh in Shongom local government area.
It is important to note that we are not even talking about the projects initiated and successfully executed within his first four years in office.
Even in the midst of crunched economy, and technical recession, Governor Dankwambo has improved the living conditions of Gombe People through laudable economic, education and human development projects.
He established a micro finance bank for farmers and SMEs in all the local government areas in the state and broke the jinx of fertiliser monopoly by making much more available to the farmers, by procuring over 225 tractors – from Mersi Ferguson of Italy – as well as other farming implements.
Inuwa kept on about how much the former governor, Senator Danjuma Goje, did for the state and how since he left office, Gombe has been stagnant and redundant. That was as much insulting as it was intentionally ignorant of Inuwa. In addition, Talban Gombe has constructed 50 times more roads than all of his predecessors. Inuwa and his ilk can argue with their consciences.
Inuwa went on and on about education and how “nothing has been done.” Granted, let us say he is right, as he wanted to be and nothing has been done. I do not think Dankwambo has the capacity to perform 100 per cent as an administrator. Given the myriad challenges a governor has to go through – including having people like Inuwa having to bad-mouth their every move, in order to be governor – a governor can only do as much as he can. Not much can be done in four years, even eight, but if the mind is right and we begin to build from the scratch like Dankwambo has done, all will be well.
Dankwambo renovated/constructed over 502 classrooms, recruited of over 1,000 Degree/NCE graduates apart from training of over 5,000 teachers. He also established the School of Basic and Remedial Studies Kumo, College of Education Billiri, State Polytechnic Bajoga, College of Legal & Islamic Studies Nafada and sponsored 25 Students to go for maritime studies in India and the United Kingdom.
Dankwambo is, by far, the best governor in the country and anybody can find out the internally-generated revenue and tax-payers money utilisation by Talban in embarking on people-oriented projects and their timely completion is second to none. So, essentially, what is Inuwa talking about?
Maintenance culture is the soul of matured democracy world over and, speaking of that, Governor Dankwambo has not only maintained but also completed all the inherited and abandoned projects in Gombe State. His transparency and accountability to the people of Gombe on how financial and material resources were expended and distribution of projects across the states’ senatorial districts is near-perfect.
Inuwa did mention that the school he and Dankwambo attended, “which is just a stone-throw from Dankwambo’s home back in the day” has remained “in ruins and uncompleted.” That is a huge shot in the dark and, gladly, it only came back to Inuwa. The school he is talking about, which he so comfortably forgot to remember, is the Hassan Central Primary Model School. More embarrassing is the fact that the school has been completed and has long been launched/commissioned. Where did Inuwa get his information from? How did he get so desperate?
Is it possible that one who hopes to be governor of the ‘Jewel of the Savannha ’ does not have detailed information about the state? Well. On the issues of developing Gombe, we know how Inuwa Yahaya plans to develop the state; it is exactly the way he is using his office as a comissioner for finance in the state to enrich his family’s company, to the detriment of the people of Gombe. If he is claiming that Dankwambo did not win election in his ward and still emerged governor of the state, it can only mean one thing: Dankwambo rigged the election or Inuwa is lying through his teeth.
Gombe people made their decision almost eight year ago and Inuwa is only now crawling out of his hole to make some noise before 2019 and what better way to ride on the name of the governor who is on his way out. Inuwa must come to equity with clean hands. Engaging in a tirade on the pages of a newspaper is not the same as going to the state to campaign and pet the people be the first court to acquit him.
Dankwambo has been celebrated and well received by the people of Gombe, mostly because of his frugal and efficient use of state resources while in office. His stripping off the status quo of sharing money for friends and cronies have chased the greed-mongers into the shadows and left only those who are development-minded and people-oriented in the light. I dare-say that the people of Gombe now know their true friends and, sadly, Inuwa is not one of them.
Inspite of the promises, the ‘Buhari Tsunami’ and the ‘change’ mantra of the APC in 2015 ,Dankwambo defeated them in 2011 and in 2015.
Fast-forward to 2019, when the strenght of the APC is not what it once was and the people now know them as deceivers and people who do not keep their promises…it is a given that that the PDP will carry the day in Gombe, come 2019, if it keeps on with the present tempo.QED.
While he gets his chance to mouth-off in the national dailies, just because he wants to be governor, let me remind Inuwa that the manipulations of he and his paymaster have failed in Gombe due to the patience of Dankwambo and his higher approach to things. He has waited them out these six-plus years and is set to organize his party to send them to the cleaners at the poll in 2019.
Abubakar is the senior special assistant, press, to the governor of Gombe State, Alhaji Ibrahim Dankwambo.
– Abubakar is Senior Special Assistant, Press, to the governor of Gombe State.
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