Says he ‘ll defeat PDP’s candidate at Supreme Court
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
GOVERNOR Simon Lalong of Plateau State on Friday told the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, governorship candidate in the March 9 2019 elections, General Jeremiah Useni popularly known as Jerry Boy to leave political contest in the state for the younger generation.
Governor Lalong said that the daughter of General Useni was his classmate in school and that he looks at the retired General as a father, stressing that it was unfortunate that he had to fight a political battle with such a person.
Fielding questions from State House correspondents after the Appeal Court in its judgment said that the governor validly won the March 9 elections, he enthused that even if General Useni should go to Supreme Court, he would defeat him (Useni) again.
He said that the litigations by the PDP candidate against him right from the Election Petitions Tribunal, to the Appeal Court and maybe, to the Supreme Court was to make him lose focus.
On his message to Chief Useni, Governor Lalong said, “I will say it again here, his daughter was my classmate, I have told him several times, his first daughter was my classmate. So at this stage I would have been expecting his daughter to contest for governor and not him.
“His daughter was my classmate, we went to school together and so why should we be fighting? Fighting him is like fighting a father, it’s unfortunate but for me, I say my focus is Plateau State.
“We have done that in the first election, he was defeated, he said no, they will go back for a re-run, I said let’s go back for rerun. We went back for rerun I defeated him, he said no he was going for the tribunal. We went to the first tribunal, he said he is a General he doesn’t fight and retire, he will go to the Supreme Court.
“That I think is to make me lose focus but I have not lost any focus in Plateau State. As he is moving, I am becoming more determined. The governor of Edo was telling me today (yesterday) that he left Plateau last year but when he went to Plateau a week ago, it was a different Plateau and I told him after Christmas if you come, you will see a different Plateau. ”
Asked on how he feels with the Appeal Court judgment, he said, “As far as I am concerned, the main election was more important for me. I did the election, I did a run off, we went to the tribunal the first time, we went again for the second time.
“Well, I don’t know whether he is going for the third time. One thing I am very sure and with the confidence I have in Plateau people I know that this victory they are very happy about it. They have prayed about it and the victory is very sweet.
“You know when you get things this way and people are very happy. I am serving people and each time I look at them, I pity them if there is any change in Plateau State with what have done so far, restoring peace in Plateau State, bringing development to the people of Plateau state and all over night, to say that something can change it, it will be very very unfortunate. But I thank God for the judgment and also the confidence we have in the judiciary.”
Also asked how he felt with one of his citizens emerging first in an automobile exhibition, the governor said that his vision was to bring the best out of the youths of Plateau State.
He said, “He is not the only one. I promised people that my vision is to bring out young people like that. After he emerged as the overall best, the next year another one came out and emerged an overall best. When we launched it this year it was Plateau again.
“So, that is what I am doing. I am focusing on bringing out young talents and after he manufactured a tractor and became the overall, immediately I encouraged him. Today, he has produced a car. So what we exhibited yesterday (Thursday) was for people to come. If you are asking people to be like Innoson and to produce cars in Nigeria, we have young talents from Plateau that can manufacture cars.
“So, he did that and you saw the car, so what we are doing was exhibiting him outside and we are asking people to come and help him so that we will start producing those cars in Plateau, made in Plateau car.”