By Ralph Madugu
A group, under the aegis of Tangale Elders Forum, has reminded the Gombe State Governor, Alh. Inuwa Yahaya, not to forget that he swore to an allegiance to protect the lives and properties of the entire people of Gombe State and of course the people of Tangale.
This was contained in a communique issued at the end of a recent meeting of the forum held under the leadership of the Tangale Community Development Association Board of Trustees Elders.
They observed that despite the concerted effort of the Tangale Elders Forum for the restoration of peace in Billiri Local Government, the Gombe State Government has remained insensitive to the plight of the Tangale people by “smuggling” one of the losers in the contest for the stool of Mai Tangle into the Kingdom and “surreptitiously” installing same as the new ‘Mai Tangle’.
“The presence of heavily armed security officers during the exercise of the election of the Mai was uncalled for. Therefore, the people were highly intimidated by the presence of heavily armed security officers. It was a clear case of coercion.
“Non-elective Traditional Council leaders were absolutely denied access into the venue of the exercise. This is a negation of the standing procedure. They were denied their role of being observers. The agents of the candidate were not allowed at the venue.
“The Tangale Elders forum found it difficult to understand the type of Arithmetic of the State Government were two (2) become great or more than five.
“The arrest of our people up to 24 numbers by the State Government to Abuja and Gombe was an Anathema. We believed a crisis like this takes two to tango, however the arrest was lopsided.”
While demanding for the release of the District Head of Todi, who was arrested for what they termed “flimsy reasons”, the elders alleged that “It is evident that the Governor does not mean well for the Tangale people, this is quite clear from the statement coming from the Governor.”
They also decried “the very long duration” of the curfew imposed on their people and called for a complete lifting of the curfew in order to allow the people especially the Christians to observe the Easter celebration which is a major religious observance by the Christendom all over the world.
The Forum noted with utter dismay the mayhem and wanton destruction of lives and properties carried out by hoodlums who did not mean well for the law abiding and peace-loving community, it however dissociated itself from the violence that followed the selection of the new Mai Tangale and also condemned it in very strong terms.
It further described the callous act unleashed on Billiri Town as alien to the people, stating that such was not in the character of Tangale indigene including their settlers with whom they have been co-existing peacefully since time immemorial.
On the selection of the new Mai Tangale, the Forum alleged that the guideline as approved in accordance with the culture and tradition of the Tangale people was totally flouted adding that the government took over the entire exercise instead of the King makers stating that the Tangale people do not want anything now other than the appointment and enthronement of Dr. Musa Idris Iliyasu Maiyamba as the duly elected Mai Tangle.
While advocating for unity among the people, the Elders Forum encouraged them to be their brother’s keepers by being security conscious in whatever they are doing.
They however, reaffirmed that Tangale people a very peaceful and law abiding hence they have always been loyal to any Government of the day and resolved that it is only when peace is fully restored in the community that meaningful development can be achieved.