By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi
Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State on Tuesday received accolades from former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan who was in the state to commission a newly constructed 6.2 kilometre road project which was named after him as Goodluck Jonathan Bye-pass.
Speaking during a homage to the Emir of Bauchi, Dr. Rilwanu Suleiman Adamu at his palace, the former president told the mammoth crowd besieging the venue of the event that he enjoyed a good working relationship with Senator Bala Mohammed when he was Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.
Dr. GoodLuck Jonathan recalled that he never knew Senator Bala Mohammed when he appointed him the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, despite that it is a culture in Nigeria to give political appointments into government based personal relationship, saying however “It was not my own way of doing things”.
Jonathan said, “Bala Mohammed is a son and younger brother, even when he was a Minister, he worked with commitment and I gave him a free hand to run the ministry”.
He stated, “I want to use this opportunity to also thank the good people of Bauchi state for supporting my good son, you have done very well in supporting him. It could have been difficult for him to win the gubernatorial election without your support”
The former president also recalled that it was the first time ever-since he left office to visit Bauchi, and expressed delight for immortalizing him name and his link with the Bauchi Emirate council where he was honoured with a traditional title of ‘Jigon Bauchi’.
“I am grateful for immortalizing my name and my links with Bauchi emirate by naming a road after me, and honouring me a traditional title. When an infrastructure is named after you, it is something you cannot devalue, because even if you die, the name still remains there”
“Within this period that Bala Mohammed is Governor, I have been asking questions, even in my meetings with him. He has done quite a number of projects that I wonder where the money comes from”.
Jonathan explained that he was carried away by the number of the number of projects the governor has executed within such a period of time knowing fully that the economic environment is not that friendly, adding “It is not easy for a governor to raise money and execute all these projects”.
Governor Bala Mohammed has earlier while welcoming the august visitor to the state, said that the former president was instrumental in his coming to limelight in Nigeria, adding that Goodluck Ebele Jonathan made him minister without knowing him or belonging to the same party.
“The former President Goodluck Jonathan really impacted on me and other youths in Nigeria by giving me responsibility and by so doing, given me a burden to carry his name on my head, that I must perform anywhere I went because he did not give me that position by my own incline or anybody seeking for it on my behalf”.
Responding, the Emir of Bauchi, Dr. Rilwanu Suleiman Adamu thanked the former president for honouring the invitation to commission the road project in the state, saying that he has always lived an exemplary life which people in the country look up to, even after leaving office.