Since the Governor of Adamawa State, His Excellency, Rt Hon. Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, let it out in public that he is considering probing the administration of his predecessor, Umaru Jibrila Bindow, the political climate in the state has darkened, with many, especially stalwarts of the All Progressives Congress (APC), coming at the governor with all sorts of munitions and embarking on a slur/smear campaign.
The ones which have stood out in the last couple of days are those published by the Desert Herald as its editorial and an outburst-cum-hack job by a stalwart of the APC, who once ran around crying to all and sundry, telling anyone who cared to listen, how the APC manipulated him out of the politics in the region and how everyone must fight back. Suddenly, he is a voice for the APC. The power of politics to make many a man of integrity into turn-coats is one that is still a mystery to many.
Fintiri had simply stated – done what all reasonable governors do if they discover foul play in the state coffers: “Let me assure you, no matter how big you are, no matter who your father is, in the state, if you served the government yesterday and you have embezzled, either at state or local government level, I will soon start to recover the resources of this state that have been embezzled by the immediate administration.”
“Our slogan is – government of focus and development.”
This seemingly set the cat among the pigeons and heralded a mud-slinging and criticism fest. Yes, Fintiri rode into office on the white horse called Goodwill. Has he lost it? Not at all. Are there those who want us to believe that he has lost it? Oh, many. Bindow, for all his faults, had his moments of glory; yet, he was not given the time of day. I am not surprised that Fintiri is getting sticks. This is the brand of politics where you only go up by dragging another down. Sadistic politics.
While it took Bindow a year to appoint commissioners into his cabinet, Fintiri did that in six months, thanks to his open door-policy. If Fintiri is the loafer Duhu and the Desert Herald point out, he would not have earned the prestigious award presented to him by the LEADERSHIP Newspapers Group.
Fintiri’s time in office, so far, has been transformative and purposeful. I daresay, though this is subject to opinion, what can easily be gleaned from the Desert Herald’s opinion piece is that Fintiri’s greatest undoing is his inability to please a few political interests with resources meant for the development of the state and its people.
To be candid, if Fintiri had not proved himself during his double stints as acting governor, no one would have let him take a sniff of the Governor’s Office in Yola. How did he get the name ATM? During his first stint as Acting Governor, he endeared himself to civil servants in the state by paying them their two-month backlog. Thus, he earned the sobriquet “ATM”.
In his second coming as Acting Governor, which lasted 86 days, Fintiri rehabilitated a number of road projects, especially within the state capital, earning more plaudits.
To think that, now, as governor, with the appealing option of re-election, he will go to sleep is, for want of a better word, unfortunate
Duhu and his ilk need to know that Fintiri’s administration procured and distributed 60 Hilux vans and 50 motorcycles to the various security outfits in the state to fight social insecurity brought about by the activities of the inglorious ‘Yan Shila Boys’.
Governor Fintiri did not divert the grains donated by the Federal Government to the state. That is a lie from the pit of hell and a clear case of the opposition latching onto straws at a time when the people are vulnerable and easily swayed by such news. The SEMA and other bodies responsible for such deliveries from the government can testify to this. When did the state government receive the trucks of grain? Did the worst-hit states by the COVID-19 virus get 50 trucks of grain?
While The Desert Herald and Duhu accuse Fintiri of being divisive and rudderless, it is pertinent to state that, upon assumption of office, he retained the structures left by Bindow. Why? To ensure continuity. Only the state profits in the end. Divisiveness has never profited any well-meaning administrator. Only fools glory in chaos.
While his predecessor grappled with the finances of the local government councils and stifled them, Fintiri has restored their financial autonomy and their ability to pay their workers without ‘long stories’.
Fintiri has been servicing the gargantuan amount of loans and other financial debts incurred by the administration before his and, to his credit, he has not been bitching about it. He has opted to fly fine lines and, by God, he has won the heart of many with his composure.
It could be, sadly, that the Fintiri The Desert Herald and Duhu see is quite different from the one every progressive resident or citizen of Adamawa State behold and observe from where he or she is seated.
We all know Fintiri has got a few things to learn to approach administration/governorship better but, as our political history has shown, we always get in a hurry to elect and replace political leaders. Both Duhu and The Desert Herald have got yet-undeclared agenda. Everyone is concerned about where their bread is buttered and forget that this propaganda they are peddling will take them no where.
Also,The Desert Herald did point out that “…the appointment of Engr. Bashir Ahmed as the Secretary to the Adamawa State Government was believed to be the worst undoing by the governor akin to committing a political suicide.”
This is laughable. Who made the conclusion that the SSG is not a man loved by all. Does this matter;is this envy or just plain pointlessness? How many of the ministers in the cabinet of the FG were applauded by the nation?
The article also took a swipe at the governor’s Chief of Staff, Professor Maxwell Gidado, referring to him as a “…huge baggage”. This is candid, arrant nonsense. Prof. Gidado’s input in the Governor Fintiri-led administration is glaring. A man of due process and due diligence, he is contributing in no small measure, in ensuring that the governor writes his name in gold in running the affairs of the state.
Oh! Is it that someone is eying the seats of the Secretary to Adamawa State Government, Chief of Staff , commissioners of Finance, Works and Local Government Affairs? The Desert Herald should have been quick to say that, without merry go rounding. To be fair to these people, they are, to the best of my knowledge, discharging their duties without fair or favour and not just their kits and kin, Adamawa is making progress because of their commitments and to put the record straight, there is no resentment against the government from well-meaning people of the state because of anyone of them. The allegation is rudely false, highly spurious, and a figment of imagination of the perpetrators and peddlers of such humongous lie against them.
While it is understandable that Duhu needs to get back on his horse, having fallen off the saddle, The Desert Herald,meant to be an arbiter in these things,shamelessly takes sides and rubs its nose in the mud. Shame.
Duhu and The Desert Herald can tell their paymasters to wait a while. Let us see how this one will play out before we run to the polls again. We are in need of change, not political job-men and snake oil salesmen who have nothing to offer but propaganda and silly promises.
Ahmadu, a public affairs analyst, wrote in from Yola.