By Femi Bolaji – Jalingo
Concerned Southern Taraba Elders has faulted the claim by the Senate deputy minority leader and senator representing Taraba South, Emmanuel Bwacha, that a fracas with Governor Darius Ishaku’s brother led to the detention of 14 youths by the police.
The elders who addressed the press on Friday, in Jalingo, Taraba state capital, explained that the motion raised by the senator on the floor of the Senate on May 5, 2021, was only meant to distract the police from doing their job.
Recall that Senator Bwacha in a motion at the floor of the senate said 14 people from his constituency have been in detention after a quarrel with the brother of Governor Ishaku.
Leader of the elders, Sale Pimtim who spoke for the group, dissociated the elders from the action of the senator, which he claimed was borne out of malice for the state governor.
He said, “as Stakeholders from Southern Taraba, this is not the time to remain silent when the exalted office of a Governor is being desecrated or painted in negative over issues involving persons reasonably suspected to have committed serious offenses.
“To drag the Governor’s name or his alleged brother’s name in this matter shows the level of malice that Senator Bwacha has developed against the Governor.
“Senator Bwacha grew up in Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku’s grandfather’s house in Takum and also enjoyed the benevolence of the Ishaku’s family, during which he knew all the brothers of the Governor.
“The Senator knows that none of the Governor’s brothers reside in Takum and none of them was in Takum during the sheer display of gangsterism by the Senator’s boys.
“As Elders, we are worried that Senator Bwacha will descend so low to raise a motion on the floor of the Senate to seek to set his political thugs off the hook despite the heinous offenses they are alleged to have committed and are currently facing the full wrath of the law.
“It is common knowledge that Southern Taraba has suffered and is still suffering from the evils of bandits, kidnappers, herdsmen, and other allied criminals which have resulted in the death of over 200 persons in the area; including security men, women and children.
“Yet Senator Bwacha has never raised a motion on the floor of the Senate over these security problems in Southern Taraba, which have claimed many innocent lives.
“It is therefore strange and surprising that the Senator finds the arrest and detention of 14 youths, who are alleged to have committed serious offenses, more important than the lives of law-abiding citizens and security men that are being killed on daily basis.
“The particular incident for which those 14 youths were arrested, threw the whole of Takum and environs into confusion, as hooligans had a field day freely brandishing sophisticated weapons in broad daylight, committing arson and causing grievous bodily harm to innocent persons leaves much to be desired.
“We are also worried that despite these criminalities that have kept the good people of Southern Taraba in perpetual sleepless nights, Senator Bwacha will not allow the Police to carry out a thorough and dispassionate investigation to bring the culprits to book.
“We had expected that the Senator would rally round the Governor and give him the necessary support to wipe out criminality from Southern Taraba since he is our Senator from that zone, rather the Senator is taking steps to prejudice Police investigation and to divert attention from the main issue at stake to set his boys off the hook. This is unacceptable.
“More worrisome is the fact that both Senator Bwacha and His Excellency Governor Darius Dickson Ishaku are not only from the same senatorial zone, Southern Taraba, but also belong to the same political party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
“We hold the strong view that there is more to Senator Bwacha’s action than meets the eyes, and such action is tantamount to pouring fuel on the already burning furnace of insecurity in Southern Taraba.”