By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi.
A crack has appeared in the Executive Council of Bauchi state with the voluntary resignation Thursday ofCcommissioner of the State Planning Commission, Shehu Barau Ningi who said his advisory role for good governance has been jettisoned by Governor Mohammed Abubakar.
Alhaji Shehu Barau in a letter of notification of his resignation to the state Governor, explained that the environment in which he will exercise his advisory role as member of the State Executive Council has been unaccommodating, debilitating and non-adviser friendly.
In the letter of resignation through the secretary to the State Government, Bello Shehu Ilelah, Ningi stated that Governor Mohammed Abubakar adopted a hostile, aggressive and intimidating posture which scares virtually all members of the council from offering good, frank, sincere and honest advice.
“It appears Your Excellency prefers to listen to illiterates and sycophants. Your Excellency, this sycophancy is your creation. Consequently, everybody is now compelled to tell you what you want to hear”.
The public officer relinquishing commissioner described the Bauchi Executive Council as mere rubber stamp ratifying anticipatory approvals only which is against constitutional provision relevant to the appointment of commissioners at state level of governance.
“I’m sure Your Excellency cannot recall the number of times you shouted at me merely because I offered simple suggestions and piece of advice. Your Excellency may wish to know that it has become a culture for top government officials to discuss their ordeal in their respective interactions with you and the embarrassment they receive”.
Ningi said another factor detrimental to his departure is the unwarranted, unjustified and deliberate marginalization of himself and his group whose contributions to Governor Mohammed Abubakar’s victory in both primary and general elections have been deliberately underrated and even forgotten.
The resigned commissioner also recalled that as a prominent stakeholder, he has no hand in the nomination of even a single councillor in the caretaker committee of his Local Government Council; a pointer Ningi said is an indication to his political exclusion and negation of the principle and practice of corresponding reciprocity.
Ningi also gave the unnecessary and avoidable intra-party crisis in the APC in the state as another push factor to his exit which, he opined, will culminate in woeful failure of the ruling party in the state at the polls in 2019.
The former commissioner further recalled that despite the several reconciliation committees the Government constituted on the party crisis, several times did the Governor simultaneously make paradoxically negative and provocative comments/remarks in respect of other contending group, saying his position looks deceitful and uncompromising.
Alhaji Shehu Barau also hinged the resignation to the apparent marginalization and relegation of his emirate, Ningi which he democratically represent, especially as relates to appointments and provision of development projects as exemplified by the recent contract awards for the construction of roads across the state.
Barau noted that reasons for his resignation may stimulate and encourage the Governor to embrace and practice the “Change Begins with me” slogan, as he remain grateful for the opportunity though ‘lackadaisically’ given to him to serve the people of Bauchi state.
But reacting to Ningi’s resignation, the state commissioner of finance, Garba Sarki Mohammed Akuyam described as baseless, malicious, not true and unfounded the reasons which the out-going commissioner gave Thursday supporting his resignation from the services of the state government.
Commissioner Garba Akuyam who also described Shehu Barau Ningi as a confused person, who was said to have been nursing the idea to resign six months ago but for the 2017 budget presented last Tuesday, said that even the budget Barau prepared has to undergo excessive surgery.
“When Shehu Barau submitted the budget proposal he prepared during one of our Executive Council meetings, observations were raised about omissions and commissions which culminated to a formation of a committee of experts to doctor it because what Ningi prepared was rubbish”.
He stated, “The Governor had to set up a committee chaired by him Shehu Barau and other people like me and some experts where we served as members and doctored the budget proposal before it was presented to the State House of Assembly”.
Alhaji Garba Akuyam wondered how immediately Shehu Barau resigned Thursday, he immediately went and met somebody whom, Barau want, to talk to Dr. Ali Pate, to join his gubernatorial campaign train ahead of 2019 general elections.
“And Ali Pate did not tell Shehu Barau that he is going to contest in the 2019 elections. I have my facts and figures, let him take me to court, not even lower courts but Supreme Court, I’m ready to depend what I said”, Akuyam stated.
Akuyam also debunked Ningi’s vituperation that he is ready to accept any appointment by the same government in the future, describing it as contradictory, querying “Where and in which government is he going to serve, is it on sky or who is he going to serve, ‘We in government knows who is Shehu Barau”.
“When we won primaries, Shehu Barau was with another gubernatorial aspirant and when the aspirant failed to effect for a review of the primaries, Barau used to go to Barrister M.A. Abubakar residence from 6.00am to 12 midnight until when Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar directed for the stoppage of frequent visit to his residence by Shehu Barau.
Akuyam similarly described Shehu Ningi as the architect of the party crisis he was talking about, stressing that Ningi is resigning in his capacity as member of the State Executive Council, but not as member of the APC.
By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi.