*It’s untrue, I can’t move against Suntai, says Umar
BY SONI DANIEL, REGIONAL EDITOR, NORTH & JOHN MKON
Jalingo—Loyalists of the recuperating Taraba State Governor, Danbaba Suntai, are unhappy with the Acting governor, Alhaji Garba Umar, for allegedly plotting to unseat his boss through the constitution of a medical board to declare him incapacitated.
A pro-Suntai politician told Vanguard yesterday that Umar had already instructed the Secretary to the State Government to raise a memo authorising the House of Assembly to constitute a medical panel to thoroughly examine Suntai’s health in line with the Constitution of Nigeria.
According to sources close to the plot, the pro-Umar camp could get Suntai out of office before the end of January, if the plot sails through.
However, the acting governor, Umar, yesterday, denied any move to unseat his boss, blaming desperate politicians who were bent on creating avoidable crisis in the state, for the rumours making the rounds.
Umar, who spoke through his Chief Press Secretary, Sule Kefas, said there was no truth whatsoever in the allegation, insisting that he could not move against the man, who picked him as his deputy.
Kefas said, “there is no plan of any sort by the acting governor of Taraba State to set up a medical board with a view to impeaching Governor Danbaba Suntai. The story being bandied about is nothing but pure speculation by the enemies of the state and its people.
“As far as the acting governor is concerned, he is totally loyal to his boss and will continue to do so until he recovers fully and returns to his office. Let it be known to all those spreading the rumours that there is no friction between the two leaders of our state.
“For those who do not know, Umar does not have any political programme different from the masterplan put in place by Suntai. Besides, Umar has never for once shown any sign of disloyalty to Suntai and will never contemplate doing so,” the acting governor’s spokesman said.
Vanguard learnt that the increasing fear of the pro-Suntai men stemmed from the fact that the acting governor has taken control of the State House of Assembly and also appointed a new SSG, who could easily be mobilised to do his bidding at any time.
Vanguard also gathered that in a bid to assure Suntai of his loyalty, the acting governor consulted with the governor on the formula for sharing the State Executive Council seats and allocated four positions to him and four to members of the House of Assembly.