Jos: Despite security presence, residents still in fear of isolated attacks

Residents of Rikkos and Nasarawa Gwong communities in Jos have cried of insecurity despite heavy military deployments following recent unrests in the Plateau State capital.

A number of isolated killings and burnings have occurred, usually at nights and midday when residents might have gone to bed or to work, it is said.

For the past one week, at least three houses have been set ablaze in what appeared to be a deliberate attempt to expel the remaining minority groups in Nasarawa Gwong area, a youth leader in the community, Mr. Ezekiel Dusu told MKB.

Although securities have been active in keeping peace, hoodlums from a suspected Muslim community he said usually sneak through unguarded routes into communities dominated by other tribes to attack or burn properties.

Houses belonging to Muslims have equally not been left out according to him.

He however believes the burning of unoccupied Muslims' houses could be a smokescreen to start fresh riots.

A Catholic Church, a traditional ruler's palace and at least 15 houses belonging to Christians were set ablaze in the area during the October skirmishes.

A practicing lawyer was reportedly stabbed in the same location two weeks after normalcy had returned.

Similar incidences were reported on Monday this week in Rikkos where passengers on commercial tricycles otherwise known as "keke napep" were stabbed close to military checkpoints.

It is however believed that the securities are often taken unawares by the perpetrators.

Although authorities have not confirmed either of the reports, the residents are appealing for more security coverage to avert any further losses.

Nigerian Govt backs Jos based African Documentary Award winner ahead US Challenge

The Nigerian Government has pledged its support to the 2018 winner of the African Documentary Award, Miss Dorcas Bello as she sets for the intercontinental documentary challenge in the United States next year.

The Governor Simon Lalong led government of Plateau, Miss Bello's home State on Tuesday said the welfare and development of its citizens especially youths is top among its priorities.

Receiving the continental documentary winner in Jos, the Information and Communication Commissioner of the Central Nigerian State, Yakubu Datti praised Miss Bello's victory as having added to the existing records of excellence by the State in the area of tourism.

"In Plateau State, we have a history of excellence in two areas - sports and film making, and I'm glad that Dorcas has stepped in to continue what we have long started," he said.

Represented by the Acting Permanent Secretary of the Information and Communication Ministry, Mr. Ishaya Turba, the Commissioner pledged his readiness collaborate with the organizers of the competition towards the identification and promotion of more talents in the film industry.

The winner of the 2018 competition held in October in the Nigerian capital city, Abuja, dedicating the award to the state lauded the Government's efforts at educational and rural development which she identified as the root of her success in film making.

"Let me particularly thank the Government led by the great governor Bar Simon Lalong, who has not only focused on the development of education at all levels in the state but has also consolidated on grassroots development, women and youth empowerment, and the pursuit of peace and security for both indigenes and visitors to our state," She said.

She particularly attributed her professional breakthroughs to the accreditation, manpower and capital development of the Plateau State University Bokkos, her alma mata by the Lalong administration.

"I must say that I was particularly inspired by your great works especially in my school," the film maker stated.

Miss Bello who by her victory at the continental challenge has been appointed an automatic ambassador of the African International Documentary Foundation pledged to use her skills to project the values and potentials of the state to the global audience for more enhanced patronage and partnerships.

She said "I have come in the company of senior officials of the AFIDFF to inform you about the AFIDFF and to share with you the plans to also tell the stories of culture, peace and developmental strides in plateau state."

The African International Documentary Foundation was founded to promote the African heritage, providing a platform for Africans to "tell their own story" through documentary films, the foundation's Programs Director, Mrs. Afiniki Mangzha said.

This year's challenge according to her focused on the scorch of Polio and the ways to end its spread in Africa.

Miss Bello's entry among numerous other entries stood out for its human angle treatment which focused on one unique character, Mrs. Mangzha said.

As a result of Miss Dorcas' efforts, the Abuja based character in her film who is a polio survivor has gotten a mobility aid from the Rotary International Club, it was learnt.

Miss Bello is expected to star at the intercontinental rounds of the competition in Chicago, United States of America next year alongside other winners from other continents.

She is however expected to undergo training under the AIDF for one year while working on several documentary projects with the foundation.

Missing General: Wanted Village Chief loses sons during search, gets detained despite submitting self to securities

Police yesterday detained the Village Head of Du-rah village in Jos. Mr. Yakubu Rap, despite voluntarily submitting himself to its Plateau State Headquarters.

Sources say the 52 year old was thrown behind bars along with three others who equally submitting themselves after being declared wanted by the Police in connection to the disappearance of the Defense Headquarters' immediate past Chief of Administration (Army), Major General Idris Alkali.

Mr. Rap had reportedly lost his two sons and a house when soldiers carried out a raid in Du-rah village during the search for the missing General.

He reportedly submitted himself being confident that he knew nothing about the case.

He was however put in cell after his lawyers who were with him from morning when he reported to the Police went out at about sunset to buy him food.

Efforts to get him released by the attorneys for the continuation of interrogation today proved abortive.

The Army authorities had alleged that Mr. Rap co – chaired the meeting held to relocate the corpse of the senior officer from a shallow grave to elsewhere immediately his car was found in the abandoned mining pit filled with water.

A youth leader who had reportedly cooperated with the troops carrying out the search was among those declared wanted.

Interrogation for the wanted persons who have repotted themselves is expected to continue today.

Missing General: Wanted Village Chief loses sons during search, gets detained despite submitting self to securities

Police yesterday detained the Village Head of Du-rah village in Jos. Mr. Yakubu Rap, despite voluntarily submitting himself to its Plateau State Headquarters.

Sources say the 52 year old was thrown behind bars along with three others who equally submitting themselves after being declared wanted by the Police in connection to the disappearance of the Defense Headquarters' immediate past Chief of Administration (Army), Major General Idris Alkali.

Mr. Rap had reportedly lost his two sons and a house when soldiers carried out a raid in Du-rah village during the search for the missing General.

He reportedly submitted himself being confident that he knew nothing about the case.

He was however put in cell after his lawyers who were with him from morning when he reported to the Police went out at about sunset to buy him food.

Efforts to get him released by the attorneys for the continuation of interrogation today proved abortive.

The Army authorities had alleged that Mr. Rap co – chaired the meeting held to relocate the corpse of the senior officer from a shallow grave to elsewhere immediately his car was found in the abandoned mining pit filled with water.

A youth leader who had reportedly cooperated with the troops carrying out the search was among those declared wanted.

Interrogation for the wanted persons who have repotted themselves is expected to continue today.

Lalong hails NPF for Plateau peace

Gov Simon Lalong has commended the Nigerian Police Force for its 'immense' contribution to the return of 'relative' peace in Plateau state. 

Gov Lalong while receiving the certificate for the establishment of a Police Mobile squadron unit in Gashish district of Barkin Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State assured of government's resolve to put in place necessary infrastructure for the sustenance of peace.

According to a statement by Plateau State commissioner of Information and Communication, Yakubu Dati, the presentation was done by the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, in an occassion where he was represented by the DIG Operations, Habila Joshak, at the Police Headquarters in Abuja.

The IGP assured Gov Lalong that the Nigeria Police will continue to protect and safeguard the life and property of every Nigerian.

It would be recalled  that Gov Lalong had earlier made a request for the establishment of the Police Mobile barracks at Gashish to forestall further attacks, during the visit of President Mohammadu Buhari and the IGP to Plateau state, after incessant attacks in the area.

Plateau Governor, Speaker, others hail Peace Agency Boss over newborn triplets

Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong has congratulated the Director General of the State Peace Building Agency, Mr. Joseph Lengman over the birth and naming of his newly born triplets.

Lalong represented by the Director General, Research and Statistics, Government House, Jos, Prof. John Wade acknowledged the challenges of patenting but expressed believe that the PPBA pointsman possesses the passion and capacity to succeed in raising the kids.

After all, "The triplets coming at this time of economic uncertainties are a great blessing," he said.

The Governor however sued for public support for the family and all others in similar situations to enable them effectively raise the "precious gifts" of children at their disposal.

Similarly, the Speaker of the Plateau State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Joshua Madaki appreciated the "grace of God" made manifest through the birth of the triplets, praying for more grace to be able to raise them aright.

Other speakers at the naming ceremony held at the Jos residence of the PPBA Boss shared similar thoughts and prayed for more of such "blessings" for them.

Earlier, a Jos based cleric, Pastor Israel Omoba reading from the Bible in Psalm 127 prayed that the kids grow to light the way for greater breakthroughs in the family and in the state.

Pst. Omoba who officially dedicated and anointed the babies as he announced their names prayed against all forms of evil against them and their generation, declaring that they shall all live to fulfill their destinies.

Speaking on behalf of the Lengman family, brother to Mr. Joseph Lengman, Mr. Satle Lengmang appreciated the prayers and support of guests at the event appealing for more towards the effective upbringing of the kids.

The event which featured the cutting of the cakes in honour of the naming of the kids and their mother's birthday was attended by top personalities from all works of life including the Commander of the Special Task Force in Plateau State, Maj. Gen. Chukwudi Agundi.

Unemployment: Nigerian Govt seeks private partnership as economic realities disfavor public service

Nigeria's economic realities deteriorate, government is considering series of Public Private Partnerships to provide jobs and infrastructure, officials say.

This is because poverty and unemployment are identified conflict and crime drivers in most capitalist economies, a State Government Commissioner, Bulus Bot said, Friday.

Addressing newly employed staff to his Physical Planning and Urban Development Ministry in Plateau State, Mr. Bot regretted that shortage of funds due to increasing demands and dwindling crude oil prices which constitute the country's largest source of income have weakened government's capacity to provide jobs.

He however believed that with the partnerships government is entering into particularly in the Central Nigerian Plateau State, more jobs would be created leading to greater successes against poverty and its attendant effects.

He highlighted recent successes in that regard to include the training of thousands of unemployed citizens in various trades, the absorption of earlier employed adhoc staff into the state workforce as well as the reinstatement of some 3000 teachers dismissed by the previous administration in the state.

The Commissioner however sought the cooperation of the new staff towards the attainment of the five pillar policy thrust of the Governor Simon Lalong led government in the state.

That the new staff assured to give without reservation.

One of them, Mr. Sylvester Sati who spoke on their behalf lauded the consideration by government to involve them in the implementation of its programs.

The Physical Planning and Urban Development Ministry in Plateau State was created in 2007 and has undergone series of reforms ever since.

It however still operates from a rented facility which officials pledge to tackle.

2019: Plateau APC in closed door with aspirants beaten at Primaries

All Progressives Congress (APC) in Plateau State is currently interfacing with its aspirants who lost the recent Primary elections into various positions.

The idea according to the Party Chairman, Hon. Letep Dabang is to discuss and harmonize different interests for the growth of the party.

Dabang speaking at the meeting holding in Bukuru, Jos said the party was appreciative of the contributions of the aspirants to the growth of the party, and their interests in running for office under its banner.

Thus, the party according to him is committed to the establishment of stronger relationships with them, hence the interface which aims to provide them an opportunity to let put their feelings for possible solutions.

He regretted that such interfaces ought to have held long before the elections but for the shortage of time due to excessive engagements at the party's national structure.

He however assured that every grievances would be resolved, stating that specific instructions have been communicated the zonal structures of the party to hold similar fora with relevant stakeholders.

The meeting which is holding behind closed doors was said to be timely in view of the sacrifices by aspirants and members towards ensuring the party gains an edge over its contemporaries ahead of the 2019 polls.

Hon. Diket Plang, a Senatorial aspirant from the State's ventral zone described the move as excellent given the roles played by the aspirants in adding value to the party by virtue of their debates and financial investments during the primaries, which required some level of appreciation.

Diket agreed that there could be divergent interests in Primary elections but the party remains the "Lowest Common Multiple" for all aspirants.

"We may disagree as aspirants but we must agree as a party because the party is our LCM," he said.

Another Senatorial aspirant from Plateau Southern zone, Jibrin Banchir viewed the meeting as a way of strengthening internal democracy.

Mrs. Martina Kure and Barr. Christopher Maigida, also aspirants from Northern and Central Plateau respectively believed the move if sustained could brighten the party's chances in the forthcoming 2019 elections.

The meeting is expected to be followed by a dinner by all the aspirants of the party in the State with the State Governor, Simon Lalong on Saturday.

Plateau: Best African Documentary Award to PLASU graduate thrills Govt

The Plateau State Government has expressed delight at the recent award given to a female graduate of its university for the Best African Documentary film in 2018.

Miss Dorcas Bwetisun Bello was last weekend
picked by the African International Festival Foundation for the  best entry in this year's contest which centered around Polio disease and the need to stop its spread in Africa.

The Plateau state commissioner for Information, Yakubu  Dati in a telephone chat with MKB expressed government's excitement and readiness to support local talents for the socioeconomic advancement of the State.

Bello's production according to judges at the event's grand finale which held in Abuja, weekend had human angle story revolving a central character, thus placing her top among her contemporaries.

The Viewer TV on air personality in the West African State's capital, Abuja told MKB that the award has given her the push to strive for the Kolmour Doumour awards.

With the continental trophy however, the Bokkos native in the Central Nigerian Plateau State is expected to represent the continent in the 2019 International Documentary Awards in the United States.

Missing General: Village Head, 7 others declared wanted

Police in Nigeria have declared eight persons wanted including a village Chief over the recent alleged disappearance of a retired military General, Idris Alkali in Jos, the Plateau State capital.

The Police Command in Plateau State was last week handed 13 suspects from 3 Division of Nigerian Army in Rukuba Barracks, Jos, earlier arrested in connection to the case of the missing General.

Preliminary investigations into the case suggests that the eight wanted masterminded the crime, State Police spokesperson, Tyopev Terna said on Thursday.

In a statement obtained by MKB, the Police Public Relations Officer said the suspects declared wanted included two panel beaters (Da Chuwang Samuel aka Morinho; Nyam Samuel aka Soft Touch)’;  a  farmer, Pam Gyang Dung (aka Boss); a truck driver, Timothy Chuan and Village Head of Dura – Du District in Jos South Local Government Area of Plateau State, Yakubu Rap.

He advised anyone with useful information on their whereabouts to report to the nearest police facility or call the following telephone numbers – 07059473022, 08038907662, 08075391844, and 09053872296.

Mohammed Alkali was said to have retired a few weeks before he was declared missing on Monday, September 3 2018, a day after gunmen swooped on Dura-Du and killed about 13 persons.

About three cars were said to have been recovered from a mining pond in Dura – Du District during a cordon and search operation conducted by a team of soldiers led by the Garrison Commander of 3 Armour Division, Brig. Gen. Umar Mohammed.

The missing General was suspected to have been killed and dumped in the pond.

4000 Plateau traders to get N400m courtesy FG

The Federal Government is to spend about N400 million on 4,000 small-scale entrepreneurs in Plateau State as part of its TradeMoni empowerment initiative.

The gesture, according to its promoters, has been concretised between the Bank of Industry and GDM Group, had been part of government’s efforts to eradicate unemployment and assist those who have businesses but cannot it do it well because of finance.

The money would be paid to beneficiaries through an economic platform called Eyowo.

The Supervisor of GDM Group, Basil Atondo, during its inauguration held at the popular Terminus Market in Jos, explained that through the programme the Federal Government would be empowering  millions of people nationwide.

He said, “As a matter of fact, the Federal Government wants to register and empower as much as 200 million people nationwide. But here in Plateau State, we have registered about 4,000 people on this scheme. The target is N100,000. If you pay simultaneously as it is instructed, at the end of the day, you will have N100,000 to do your business. If you multiply N100,000 by 4,000 target, you will get the amount, which is N400 million.

“We want to see to it that we reach 4,000 people in Plateau state who, after the period of one year, can boast that the Federal Government gave them N100,000 each to boost their business. That is what we want to achieve in Plateau state.

“The Federal Government wants to meet the upcoming traders to assist them with loans from Bank of Industry that will help them boost their business. When you are registered, the Federal Government gives you N10,000 through the BoI of which you are to pay after six months with an interest rate of 0.25 per cent. That will be N250 in addition to the N10,000 that you are initially given. By the time you pay this money, the BoI will give you another loan of N15,000.

“At this time, you are still going to get the same 0.25 per cent interest rate. It does this till it reaches N100,000. When it reaches N100,000, you pay back the money and will be qualified for what is called market money, another scheme that is coming through which the Federal Government wants to give out to traders to help boost their business.”

One of the beneficiaries and Jos-based petty trader, Mrs. Nkiru Success, was overwhelmed with joy after receiving alert for the payment of the money.

She said, “When the promoters of the scheme came to me, they asked me if I am interested in the business loan, and I said yes. So, they registered me by taking my name and the amount they were going to give me at the end. They said I will fill the message on my phone. And alas, I was able to see the text message.

“I started jubilating at home, and started dancing. Even my children were asking me, what was it. I told them I have received a N10,000 free loan. My neighbours and everybody were asking me if it was real. And I said yes, I fact, I want to tell my people that it is real and a reality indeed. I am happy over it.”

ENDS***

Plateau APC to ensure proper women representation in Govt

The All Progressives Congress in Plateau State says it remains  committed to ensuring that women are carried along in governance across the state.

Rising from its State Working Committee (SWC) meeting in Jos, the party said it has endorsed the inclusion of women in critical developmental processes beginning with the 17 LGAs of the State.

A statement issued by State Chairman of the party, Hon. Letep Dabang said the State Working Committee has resolved that in order to ensure gender sensitivity, women must be considered for appointments by the recently elected Local Government officials in the state.

According to Dabang, the party has resolved that not less than two women must be appointed as Supervisory Councilors and Special Advisers in each of the Local Governments in the state.

The statement quotes the APC Chairman as saying, "the women through their patience as mothers will greatly reflect positively if involved in governance of which can be seen in this administration's drive towards women inclusion across board."

The party's State working Committee is billed to meet with the newly elected Local Government Chairmen next week to ensure this and other policies and programs of the APC at the grass roots are fully implemented, the statement notes.

The statement however commended Governor Simon Lalong on behalf of the SWC for ensuring the resumption of construction projects across the state, calling citizens to support the administration to deliver more.

Proudly Jtown: Female PLASU Graduate Wins 2018 Best African Documentary Award

A young female graduate of the Plateau State University, Bokkos, Miss Dorcas Bwetisun Bello has been awarded Best African Documentary film maker of the year.

Miss Bello, 25 was among 20 contestants from across the continent bidding for the African International Documentary title.

Organized by the African International Festival Foundation 2018, this year's contest centered around Polio disease and the need to stop its spread in Africa.

Bello's production according to judges at the event's grand finale which held in Abuja, weekend had human angle story revolving a central character, thus placing her top among her contemporaries.

The Viewer TV on air personality in the West African State's capital, Abuja told MKB that the award has given her the push to strive for the Kolmour Doumour awards.

With the continental trophy however, the Bokkos native in the Central Nigerian Plateau State is expected to represent the continent in the 2019 International Documentary Awards in the United States.

Plateau Govt, securities in talks over human rights

The Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong says his administration is in 'constant' interface with security agencies towards protecting the fundamental human rights of its citizens as they carry out their constitutional duties.

In addition, the government is committed to the protection of lives and property in the state, the State Commissioner for Information, Yakubu Dati said in a statement yesterday.

Government has a 'robust' monthly Peace and Security Dialogue Architecture where stakeholders discuss issues of peace and security, Dati explained.

He assured that "infractions" in the security operation have been taken up with the leadership of the security agencies concerned.

He however calls on citizens to support government's efforts at restoring peace while being mindful of merchants of 'fake news'.

Plateau: PDP, APC supporters clash over Langtang North Chairmanship results

Rival party supporters on Monday clashed in southern Plateau State over last month's Local Government election results which were declared in favour of the ruling All Progresses Congress (APC).

Hundreds of youths from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had stormed the Langtang North LGA secretariat to protest "the greatest electoral fraud and conspiracy between the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC) and the APC-led government in the State."

The youths we came out in their numbers said they are protesting to ensure the genuine and authentic results of the 10th October, 2018 Council Polls in the Area are announced and the person rightful winner declared.

Leader of the group and Deputy Chairman of the PDP in the LGA, Mr. Ventim Tyem,  described the actions of PLASIEC and State government as illegal and a "serious security threat" to the State.

He said elections were conducted and PDP Chairmanship Candidate, Hon. Joshua Laven Ubandoma and Councillorship Candidates won in majority of the Wards but the returning officer to the Local Government failed to collate the results for onward declaration.

According to him, the electoral officer abandoned the election materials at the LGA collation centre for Jos the Plateau State capital where he "illegally" presented results showing the APC won in all the wards.

This, a youth leader in the LGA, Mr. Stephen Danfa vowed to oppose until justice is done.

"How can you announce someone who lost an election be declared and sworn in as winner even when the elections were declared inconclusive and no rerun was conducted?

"We would not condone such broad daylight criminality" Mr. Stephen Danfa a youth in the Locality said.

He added, "We will not allow any form of injustice and immunity in their Local Government and promise to continue to keep vigil at the Secretariat to see how an illegally selected Chairman would assume office.

"We are ready to protect our votes and no person will subvert our will and go Scot free."

The opposition youths were however accosted by supporters of the ruling All Progressives Party, APC who insisted the newly sworn-in Chairman must be allowed to assume office.

AIT news reports that it took the intervention of security operatives to quell the situation.

Last two weeks, several houses were burnt and many people wounded in clashes that followed the announcement of the LG poll results by the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission.

The body had declared the results of the LGA as inconclusive but later announced the APC candidate as winner.

Missing General: Army to clampdown on media outfits over reports

The Nigerian Army Division in Jos has threatened to clampdown on media outfits disseminating news information "injurious" to its 'hard earned' image.

It particularly warned against "fake news" and comments online and on traditional media by "mischief makers" against it.

The army's threats are contained in a press statement by Col. Kayode Ogunsanya, the Deputy Director, Army Public Relations, 3rd Army Division, Jos wherein a news report by some newspapers alleged that soldiers killed a 35 year old woman in the community where search for the missing General Idris Alkali has been centered.

The statement dismissed the reports as "a deliberate falsehood and an attempt to portray the Division in bad light."

It also protested against quoted comments in some of the reports attributed to eyewitnesses in the community alleging that soldiers ransacked and stopped residents from accessing their homes, burgled their shops and ate their livestock.

The Army authorities therefore sought the publishing of its "rejoinder" statement in order to correct the "erroneous impression" created by the news reports.

Col. Ogunsanya was however contacted via text message asking if the Division had carried out proper investigations into the allegations to ascertain the possibility of unprofessional conduct by its men on the field or decoy by criminals using fake army uniform.

The text equally enquired if Toro Local Government Area in Bauchi State where the missing General had been reported by the army to have been when he disappeared was equally under investigation.

There was also a question on whether the army headquarters had yet to find the precise location of the General's phone given the GPS coordinates generated by an earlier tracking operation it had claimed to have initiated that led it to Du-rah community in Jos South which it currently investigates.

The text message which was later followed up with a reminder six hours later was however not responded to.

The Army Division had arrested and detained dozens of people in and around the community.

A journalist working with Punch newspaper and a pregnant woman were among the detained.

The arrests were made on roadsides and relaxation centres, it was learnt.

While the pregnant woman and the journalist have been released, the army have intensified search and detentions while claiming they know the "culprits" connected to the case.

The arrests and detentions have been protested by activists and the National Assembly as "arbitrary".

The Army Division has however insisted that it will leave no stone unturned to locate the whereabout of the missing retired officer "despite the antics of the fifth columnists."

SAG, the simplest thing to do now in Plateau || by Yiljap Abraham

Just SAG!

It's one of the simplest things to do now in
Plateau - if you are armed for it:

S A G = Shoot-And-Go.

Different from Kill-And-Go (KAG) by the terrorists
who have free reigns over villages and city
outskirts. They're ever as hungry as the grave
and as tormenting as wild fire.

SAG is by men in official uniform
They drive in or by, in trucks and motorcycles.

Tau!
Ta-ta-tattara-tah!

Panic.

Ta-ta-ta-tat-
pau-pau-pa-pau!
Piercing sounds over hill tops and rural roads.
Victims bite the dust
Mangled frames here and there
Unblinking eyes gazing at the midday sun. Blood
flows. Drips somewhere
Vruum... Vrrrrruuummmm.
They drive past.
Gone. Unhindered. Unhurried. Unchallenged.
Satisfied at another harvest of lives of the locals.
They'll return another day
Or go to some other place
Nobody inquires
Nobody explains
Nobody has a bad conscience
They won't even recall that the victims are non-
combatants. Unarmed. Just at home.
Their own families are safe somewhere. Maybe
immune from death.
All you need to Shoot-And-Go on the Plateau are:
a loaded rifle;
an official uniform;
a team with you;
maybe an ID card. . . and lots of human targets -
men and women
communities already in anguish
It's official killing; state murder. The state
murders her own citizens - people she should be
protecting.
All we're left with is another cycle:
Run...Wail...Bury...show the media,
then, Silence - until the next Shooting.
How can human life be this cheap and vain and
devalued on the Plateau?

- Yiljap Abraham

This is why Plateau tribes MUST unite || By Dr. Longji Dakum

This piece aims to sort out three critical issues troubling Plateau state on the one hand and the Middle-Belt Region on the other hand. It first of all seeks to explore the nature and scope of recent skirmishes tearing Plateau State apart.

In the same token, it seeks to shine a spotlight on what more could be done to save the future of unborn generation. The reality and import of my message is that, when destiny brings us together, we must appreciate our differences, consolidate on covert or overt efforts in order to reposition ourselves for sustainable growth and development.

Plateau state which is centrally located in Nigeria has had bad times, terrible past and at a point, its future looks bleak. Here is a state that never did anything wrong to warrant destruction from internal and external forces, real or imagined.

The state was a central point of Unity, at best, a unifying point. People came from across the country and to a large extent, from across the world to settle down, pursue their studies, enjoy the extraordinary weather and perhaps invest and maximize business opportunities.

Plateau State was probably the number 1 tourist destination throughout the West African country. The uniqueness of its weather, richness in natural resources and unmatched human potentials/resources placed the state in the right development trajectory. It obviously became a global reference point for socio-economic and political discourse.

As a state of course, we can’t rule out the fact that our challenges came and disrupted the space of development and the economic well-being of our people prior to the major disaster of 2001.

That was a dark history in the state’s history and everything we had laboriously built over the years started crumbling and giving way for anarchy and divisions across political, ethnic and religious lines. These violent conflicts and ill developments continued unabated, albeit with little or no efforts from those responsible for the management of the conflicts.

Dozens of lives have perished properties and valuable worth billions of naira have gone up in flames and quite regrettable, many opportunities were gone and may not probably be regained. These killings have ran through political and social periods of the states and are still continuing in a truly vicious cycle.

The good people of Bassa, Riyom, Barkin Ladi, Mangu and other flash point areas have tasted the bitter pills of bloodletting and other unholy acts of terrorism by men of the underworld.

In this context, humanitarian crisis keeps brewing immeasurably thereby making refugees to live in squalid conditions. Regrettably, the Unity of Plateau state is threatened. The integrity of the state is under assault and the future looks uncertain.

This article is not meant to condemn or apportion blames on individuals or groups. Its underlying concern is to extol the virtues and goodness of Unity. I sincerely hope that by showing the contours of this promising path, we will be more likely to choose it.

This case is made on the grounds of public interest. Unity remains paramount and ultimately crucial to the sustenance of development. It must be chosen above other primordial, ulterior and vested interests. The underlying concern is the protection of Plateau heritage and not creating room for hate and further division.

There is huge potential in unity and out of it comes the very essence of peace and justice. United we stand and divided we fall. We’ve got to be united as a wave of change. A stitch in time saves nine.

Additionally, this article will not fail to bring to limelight the legendary efforts of the likes of Baba Paul Gindiri, Chief Solomon Lar both of blessed memory and other amazing personalities who stood and still stand for the peace and unity of the State even in the face of glaring threats and obvious gloomy situations.

To them I express my solidarity, thanks and salute. It is true that Plateau State had a past that was tragically defined by circumstances beyond human control. My heart is still heavy on account of the people and properties worth billions of naira we lost.

Regrettably, we allowed our collective conscience and hands to be corrupted by religious and political manipulators. We took firearms and other weapons of mass destruction against each other. We developed hatred of monumental proportion and the consequences fell on us badly.

Why did we allow all these calamities to befell us? We lost many opportunities that could have been translated to greater dividends for the state and the people in general. The reality at hand right now is the fact that general elections are fast approaching.

The question agitating the minds of many is whether or not we will allow agents of darkness and saboteurs to create room for violence and hurt the future of the state.

This wouldn't speak good. Violence does no one good. It always results in a loose-loose situations. Many elections gave rise to bloody violence especially in Jos North where Local Government Elections were held.

Elections are critical to the sustenance of democracy but any attempt to compromise the process in other to achieve some sinister interests and motives will obviously result in conflict and if not effectively managed, might open the flood gates of destruction.

That's sad. I must also seize this opportunity through the pen to draw the attention of Plateau and Nigerian youths to be careful and never allow themselves to be used as agents of conflicts and crisis merchants.They must guard their conscience, protect their integrity and be true ambassadors of peace and unity.

The future of Plateau state indeed is up to us. We must never flag or fail in our resolve to achieve true greatness and limitless prosperity. It's time for a better future for Plateau State.

Da Jos Boi|| Why Hon. Benedict is a better running mate to JT Useni

Written by Da JosBoi

JT Useini should know that Mangu politics is no more a rudderless one without purpose or direction. We have nothing against Dalok as his running mate, but we believe Hon Benedict Shignugul understands the problem of Plateau state and that of the Mwaghavul people more than Dalok.

Our support had always been based on unified verifiable reasons.
The choice of Tyoden in the last election was not arbitrary but carefully selected with a unanimous acceptance and endorsement.

We had a Bagudu Hirse contesting for the number one seat in the state in 2015 but we opted for the number two seat in Tyoden based on our firm believe in the principle of rotation in the state and the capacity of Prof Tyoden. (Who had performed dismally according to our standard).

If the JT Useni campaign organization and indeed the PDP would insist on picking an unpopular candidate from Mangu, then they should be ready for a surprise. We don't just support anybody just because he is Mwaghavul!

We strongly feel that Benedict Shignugul besides being very conversant with the problem of Plateau, his being a devout Catholic member would douse the denominational sentiments the clueless Lalong government is weeping across the state.

The Mwaghavul people can be accommodating, understanding but nobody.......I mean NOBODY should take them for an easy ride. We can equally be daring and suicidal too.

Those who have JTs ear should advise him not to be the one to shoot himself in the foot......or puncture the momentum that had been building up in his favour in Mangu.

Anyone careful enough to study the politics of Mangu would understand that we have never been a people favourably disposed to partisan politics because of the abuses usually inherent in such practices at the detriment of credibility.

WE ARE VERY CAPABLE OF CLEARING ANYONE'S DOUBTS.

Plateau PDP: Clash over running mate caused by communication gap - Chairman

Chairman of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Plateau State, Hon. Damishi Sango says the recent clashes within the party over the selection of Mr. James Dalok as running mate for its governorship flag bearer were caused by communication gap.

Some members of his Executive Council had signed a protest letter against the choice of Mr. Dalok, a Philosophy Doctorate holder in Accounting against Mr. Benedict Shignugul, the acclaimed party's popular choice.

The State Party Chairman however told MKB in his office, Friday that the existing issues had been resolved and campaigns were about commencing.

"Lalong (the incumbent State Governor) is in trouble; he is going back to (his village) in Ajikamai (in Southern Plateau)," he said, assuring the party was united in the battle against the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) party.

Sango had however appealed to party stakeholders in Mangu Local Government Area where the top two nominees for the seat of the running mate hail from to reconcile them in the interest of the party.

Receiving an interest group from the LGA on a solidarity visit at the State PDP Secretariat, Friday in Jos, the party Chairman assured that the Gubernatorial flag bearer, Sen. Jeremiah Useni chose his running mate without interference in line with the party's constitution.

Leader of the group called Popular Mandate Researchers (PMR), Mr. Timothy Longrum however expressed delight at the choice of Mr. Dalok, given his antecedent as "humble, selfless, hardworking and detribalized," individual.

A meeting earlier reported to have held in regards of the emergence conflict within the party over the choice of the running mate was however said to have ended in a deadlock.

Some top members and officials of the party had threatened to withdraw their membership if the issues were not resolved.

A Chairmanship candidate in the recently held LGA Polls, Chief Ayuba Gufwan yesterday officially announced his withdrawal from the party in protest to "discriminatory" remarks allegedly made by some members of the State Executive Council of the party and the Gubernatorial campaign organization.

The physically challenged Mangu LGA aspirant was allegedly discriminated against given his disability, a situation he said he would not take likely.

"If I have to choose between party membership and standing for the rights of the disabled, I will choose the latter," he said in a press statement.

The State PDP Chairman, Hon. Sango has however apologized to Mr. Gufwan for the experience.

Sango believed Gufwan was productive and widely accepted in the State politics, saying the discriminatory remarks were regrettable.

Gufwan has however not announced his reconsideration of his decision following the purported apology which was widely circulated on social media.

Plateau Chairmanship candidate dumps PDP over anti-disability remarks by officials

A Chairmanship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Plateau State, Chief Ayuba Gufwan has announced his intention to withdraw from the party over "unsavory, discriminatory and divisive comments" against him by some officials of the party.

According to him, ranking members of the party, the State leadership and the party's gubernatorial campaign organization had made comments while scouting for a gubernatorial running mate, suggesting that persons with disabilities were not fit for election or appointment.

The comments he said are "unbecoming"  and "insensitive" of a political party which has "equity" as its moto.

"It invariably means that beyond lip service,  our leadership still has mundane thoughts about the capacity of person's living with disabilities," Mr. Gufwan said in a press statement on Friday.

Burki as Gufwan is popularly called recalled that twice he had aspired for elective positions on the ticket of the party with tremendous support because people believe in him, despite being physically challenged.

"If the electorates could look beyond my disability, then the action of our party is unfortunate and offensive not just to myself but to persons living with disabilities the world over.

"Are we saying that people living with disabilities cannot and should not be supported to aspire for elective positions if they possess the mental capacity for such?

"If the United States of America had discriminated against the likes of President Roosevelt and the popular musician Stevie Wonder, America would have been denied of their immense contributions to the development of that country.

"Here in Nigeria,  people like, Governor Tanko Almakura the Governor of Nassarawa State who suffers from hearing impariment,  our Father and statesmen, Senator VK Dangin and Cobham Asuquo have contributed tremendously to nation building and continue to make us proud despite having physically disability," he stated.

The acclaimed winner of the October 10, 2018 Local Government Chairmanship elections for Mangu LGA reminded the party that he had made several contributions to the building of the party but would not hesitate to withdraw his membership in standing for the rights of people living with disabilities.

He said, "I have invested my time, resources, and contributed immensely to garnering goodwill for our party but if it comes to choosing between political party membership and standing for the rights of people living with disabilities, I will choose the latter.

"If indeed we appreciate the votes of people living with physical disabilities, why then do we hold discriminatory opinions about them,  and do not accord them equal opportunity to aspire and hold positions?"

Mr. Gufwan who is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of a local foundation, Beautiful Gate Handicapped Centre, Jos however said his withdrawal from the PDP was not for the purpose of defecting to any party.

Rather, it is a protest against any form of discrimination of people especially those living with disabilities, he said.

The State Party Chairman, Hon. Damishi Sango in a swift response however published a purported apology on behalf of the entire PDP family.

"I know it hurts," he said stressing that in spite of Mr. Gufwan's physical challenge, many still believe in him.

He said, "Remember that your opponent, that you roundly defeated, has no such challenge.

"Your people and our great Party love you. I hope with this apology from me on behalf of the Party  you will reconsider your position and reverse your decision," the purported apology circulated on social media read.

As of the time of publishing this report however, Mr. Gufwan had not responded to the apology to say whether or not he was reconsidering his decision.

Plateau PDP signs International Gospel Singer for 2019

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Plateau State has sought the services of a Nigerian international Gospel singer, Dorcas Bentu for the production of a campaign theme ahead of the 2019 General elections.

The Party Chairman, Damishi Sango while hosting the renowned artiste on a courtesy call at the State Party Secretariat in Jos, Friday specifically demanded for a compelling modern-old school blend of music for the promotion of the Governorship flag bearer of the party.

He believed with the partnership of the singer and other people of goodwill, the party would succeed even beyond the 2019 elections.

Ms. Bentu had led a delegation of friends from the entertainment industry to the party to formally present herself having officially picked a membership ticket of the party.

The PDP according to her was the only party that had come up with people oriented programmes and had touched lives.

She pledged to partner with the state leadership and other stakeholders of the party to ensure its success in the coming elections.

Bentu however dismissed insinuations that politics was too dirty for Christians to participate in.

"David was a King and also a warior.

"This is not the first time a Minister will be going into politics in fact the more Ministers we have in politics, the better the country will be," she said.

Bentu had unofficially told MKB that more gospel Ministers would be joining her in the party, including veteran singer and producer, Dr. Panama Percy Paul.

News Flash: JT Useni campaign DG threatens to sue MKB for defamation

Director General of the campaign organization of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship flag bearer in Plateau State,  Prof. Dimis Mailafiya has threatened to sue Masarakim.blogspot.com for alleged defamation of character.

The University lecturer for 32 years was reacting to a news report by MKB, Friday linking him with an alleged conspiracy by some forces in the APC to influence the selection of a running mate for his principal.

Prof. Mailafiya was in the report alleged to have been bribed with N2m by the Director General of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Sir Joseph Ari to front his top staff, Dr. James Dalork for the position of the running mate.

Other ranking members of the campaign team and the PDP Chairman in the State, Damishi Sango were in the report alleged to have taken the cash gifts to aid the selection of the Deputy ITF Audit Director against the popular wishes of stakeholders in the party and Mangu LGA where the party has zoned the position.

Prof. Mailafiya who called MKB to protest the report said, "I don't associate myself with corruption or self-enrichment.

"I don't collect anything from anybody or even collect gratification when people come to say thank you.

"I say the grace of God is sufficient for me and I don't play with any publication that associates my name with that."

The Don therefore demanded to get the source of the information used in the earlier report or head to court.

He said, "I will demand that you give me that source or you will see us in court, and I will charge you for defamation of character, and ask you to pay damages."

MKB had earlier before publishing the report on the alleged bribery sent him a text to seek his reaction which was not replied.

The chosen Gubernatorial running mate, James Dalork was said to be sponsored by Mr. Joe Ari who is a kinsman of Governor Simon Lalong of the State and an appointee of the Buhari APC Government for the purpose of destabilizing the party to give the ruling APC an edge over it in the 2019 polls.

Dalork was also said to have been fronted by the APC stakeholders in order to easily relief him of his position in the ITF, having been at variance with his boss in the recent past.

The PDP State exco with the exception of the Chairman and secretary had issued a release endorsing the Central Zone Vice Chairman of the Party, Hon. Benedict Shignugul as the running mate.

The Chairman and Secretary as well as the Useni campaign organization however have settled for the supposed APC candidate, Dr. Dalork.

The controversy that has trailed that selection has suggested that some top members of the PDP including Local Government officials had threatened to decamp in protest.

Plateau 2019: APC funding pairing of Dr. Dalok with JT Useni - Source

The recent crisis within the Plateau State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over the choice of a running mate for its Governorship flag bearer, Sen. Jeremiah Useni may have been caused by certain interests within the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

Sources reveal that while the top hierarchy of the party had endorsed the PDP Central Zone Vice Chairman, Hon. Benedict Shignugul, the Director General of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Sir Joseph Ntung Ari has disbursed huge sums of money to the State PDP Chairman, Secretary and other key stakeholders to favour Dr. James Dalok, the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) accountant.

Mr. Ari is an appointee of the Buhari APC government, a tribesman to the APC Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State and blood brother to the Chairman of the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC).

He was however said to have dished N2m to Sen. Useni's campaign DG, Prof. Biti Mailafiya, N2m to a top Chieftain, Haj. Ladi Nimla and N5m to the State PDP Chairman, Hon. Damishi Sango aside other gifts to some top members of the Useni campaign team.

Mr. Ari is also alleged to have made undisclosed donations for the campaign of Sen. Useni with the aim of influencing the selection of his financial anchorman as running mate.

The ultimate goal for Mr. Ari and other forces within the APC is to trigger internal conflict of interests, which could project the opposition PDP as an unstable party, thereby weakening its chances in the 2019 Governorship race.

Mr. Dalok is also expected to serve as a spy for the APC, relaying relevant information on the internal strategies of the PDP for proper countering, the sources say.

Earlier insinuations had emerged that some denominational interests may have set into the choice of candidates to support ahead of the 2019 polls.

The Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) is believed to have lost the goodwill of other denominations given its longstanding influence on the political decisions of the State.

In protest, a number of denominations in the State are feared to have planned a protest against candidates from the COCIN extraction during the polls.

The choice of Hon. Benedict Shignugul, a catholic was therefore thought to be best for the resolution of these deep-rooted grievances arising from perceived structural imbalances.

Thus, Dr. Dalok from COCIN is considered best for the fight against PDP by the APC.

This is because aside Gov. Lalong already having a substantial population of COCIN by the connection of his Deputy, Sonni Tyoden who is from COCIN, PDP having Dalok from COCIN likely restricts the battle between a fraction of COCIN and the rest of the Christendom in the State.

Already, Gov. Lalong has the support of the larger population of the Muslim community in the state with nearly 100% support from the catholic faith where he hails from.

Having Dr. Dalok therefore seals a near automatic ticket for him despite insinuations that he may have lost the support of majority of the State.

MKB cannot however authoritatively confirm these claims as enquiries sent to Sen. Useni's campaign DG and other concerned parties were still to be responded to as of the time of publishing this report.

However, officials of the PDP were said to be holding a close door meeting with a view to resolving the conflict.

Useni Denies Picking Shignuhul, Settles For Dalok As Running Mate || DailyTrust

Contrary to news circulating that the People’s Democratic Party Gubernatorial candidate in Plateau State, and the senator representing Plateau South, Jeremiah Useni has picked Hon. Benedict Shignuhul as his running mate, Daily Trust gathered that Useni had settled for Dr. James Dalok from Mangu instead.

Our correspondent reports that a story by News Agency of Nigeria had quoted Yakubu Chocho, the party’s organizing secretary as saying Shignuhul was picked by the party and Useni after careful consideration.

However, Media aide to Useni, Abubakar Ateeku told Daily Trust that the report was false and that the State Working Committee of the PDP had forwarded three names to the governorship candidate in which Useni had settled for Dalok.

A copy of the letter sent to Useni as verified by Daily Trust has three names including Dalok, Shignuhul and Hon. Moses Tongsan.

Dalok who hails from Mangu local government area of the state is 52 years and has a PhD in accounting and over 31 years working experience.

He has also served as a former Head of Revenue, Ikeja Area Office of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) and was until his appointment, the Deputy Director Finance At the Consolidated Research and Allied Institutions Salary Structure (CONRAISS).

NB:
This story was purported to have been published by Daily Trust but MKB cannot authoritatively confirm that as it was simply copied from the JT Useni campaign platform

Alert!!! Atiku not issuing any online grant - Campaign organization

The attention of the Atiku Presidential Campaign Organization (APCO) says it is not in any way involved with the social media ‘Atiku Grant Disbursement Programme’.

The scheme surfaced on bit.ly/2NP4vup  asking interested candidates to contribute a certain amount of money which will be multiplied for them after they have downloaded a particular social media application.

APCO however in a statement on Thursday dismissed the program and any other in such manner.

"For the avoidance of doubt, the Atiku Presidential Campaign Organization is not in any way involved with the scheme or any other in such manner and neither did it give a proxy authorization," it said.

The unsigned statement by APCO stressed that the official social media handles of His Excellency Atiku Abubakar, from which all official correspondences must eminate remain www.atiku.org, www.facebook.com/atiku.org (Facebook), www.twitter.com/atiku (Twitter) and www.instagram.com/aatiku (Instagram).            

It urges the public to "discountenance" communication that did not emanate from any of these social media accounts and to refrain from participating in any online scheme that is aimed at defrauding innocent Nigerians, with the ulterior motive to embarrass the presidential campaign of Atiku Abubakar.

Plateau group hails pairing of Useni and Shignugul amid controversy

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Patriotic Front Central Zone, Plateau State has saluted the choice of the State PDP Central Zone Chairman, Hon. Benedict Shignugul as running mate to Sen. Jeremiah Useni ahead of the 2019 gubernatorial polls in the State.

Hon. Shingnuhul, 50 is the right choice that would provide "the balance of vibrance, passion and energy that will compliment Senator Useni's experience and wisdom," Mr. Aaron Ladan, an official of the group said in a statement, Thursday.

The group had last week advocated the selection of "a highly qualified running mate" as Hon. Shignuhul.

Jeremiah Useni, PDP’s governorship candidate in Plateau, on Wednesday reportedly picked Shignugul, a retired Theatre Nurse, as his running mate.

A news report credited to the News Agency of Nigeria says Shignugul, who hails from Mangu, was picked after “careful considerations and deliberations within the party’’.

When contacted however, the Director General of the Jeremiah Useni campaign organization, Prof. Biti Mailafiya said no such selection had been made.

Prof. Mailafiya told MKB in a telephone interview that consultations were still being made to determine the right running mate for the ex Nigerian Minister.

While the Public Relations Officer of the PDP in the State was not picking calls when contacted, a Chieftain of the Party told MKB that there were controversies surrounding the choice of Mr. Shignugul.

According to him, the campaign DG and other stakeholders had fronted a top Staff of the Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Mr. James Dalork.

However, discussions within the party hierarchy have favoured Mr. Shignugul given his denominational background.

While Mr. Dalork is of the Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) background as the Gubernatorial candidate, JT Useni, Mr. Shignugul is Catholic who is considered best for the battle against the incumbent Governor, Simon Lalong who is equally a catholic.

Lalong who is seeking a second term on the ticket of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has a deputy, Sonni Tyoden who is from COCIN.

This automatically implies that he still maintains substantial support from the over 4 million population Church which has dominated Plateau politics for decades.

Sen. Useni and Mr. Dalork both from COCIN standing against a seating governor whose deputy comes from COCIN therefore is feared to mean automatic ticket for Gov. Lalong.

Moreover, COCIN's influence on the political structure in the State since the 1980s civilian regime of Late Chief Solomon Lar has reportedly created salient grievances arising from feelings of marginalization among other denominations in the State.

Consequently, Mr. Shignugul's chances are higher than Mr. Dalork's even if the selection has not been officially made.

Plateau 2019: JT Useni picks ex Mangu LGA Boss, Hon. Shignugul as running mate

NAN: Jeremiah Useni, PDP’s governorship candidate in Plateau, has picked Ben Shignugul, a retired Theatre Nurse, as his running mate, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports.

According to Yakubu Chocho, the State Organising Secretary of the party, 58-year-old Shignugul, who hails from Mangu, was picked after “careful considerations and deliberations within the party’’.

“The party, together with the flag bearer, decided to pick Shignugul from a list of nine nominees,’’ Chocho told the News Agency pf Nigeria (NAN), on Wednesday in Jos.

He said that the flag bearer had an option to pick whoever he wanted, but chose to involve the party in deciding who to run with.

Mr Chocho said that the office was zoned to Plateau Central, adding that Mr Shignugul got the nod because he was of the same Mwagwavwul stock as the incumbent Deputy Governor, Soni Tyoden.

NAN reports that the running mate, who has degrees in public administration and international law and diplomacy, is a former chairman of Mangu Local Government.

He served as Special Adviser to former Gov Joshua Dariye on Health Matters, and was later appointed as Chairman, Governing Council, of the Plateau State Health Management Board.

Shignugul, a former chairman of the governing board of the College of Health Technology, Zawan was, until his appointment, the Vice Chairman of the PDP in the Central Senatorial Zone. (NAN).

PLASIEC results fraudulent, says Mangu Chair candidate

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chairmanship candidate for Mangu Local Government Area, Chief Barr. Ayuba Gufwan says the two polling units where the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC) intends to conduct rerun elections tomorrow lack the voter strength to match the vote difference of 5,585 he reportedly defeated his rival with.

As such, PLASIEC ought to declare hi. the winner of the election without any rerun if indeed it is an independent body and not an extension of the APC, he said.

In a statement on Wednesday, Mr. Gufwan described the results being peddled by the electoral body as fraudulent "based on cooked figures with a predetermined outcome."

"For the records,  the votes recorded for the chairmanship election  which I won is as follows: PDP 60806, APC 55221, a clear difference of 5585 votes," the aspirant said.

The founder of a charity organized, Beautiful Gate Handicap Centre, Jos expressed sadness at the "partisan attitude of the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC) who rather than declare the result of the Mangu election choose to declare it inconclusive," despite arriving at a clear winner.

He however congratulated a Commissioner of the electoral body, Dr. Stephen Hirse who reportedly resigned his appointment in protest against the "trampling of the will of the people," while calling on Mr. Fabian Ntung, the PLASIEC chairman to tow the path of truth and constitutionality by declaring him as winner of the "conclusive" chairmanship election.

Plateau: Rebuilding Jos Main Market, 5-Star hotel, others will cut unemployment, boost revenue says government

The Plateau State Government might be set to restore the "peace and tourism" integrity of the State towards attracting development.

The government under its present governor, Simon Lalong has assured severally that it was working to combat insecurity that has gripped the state for over a decade.

It has recently reported entering local and foreign agreements for the resuscitation of certain businesses and commercial projects that had either been abandoned or collapsed.

The government's recent signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the reconstruction of the burnt down Jos main market, its partnership with a local power company, NESCO for power generation, its plan to revisit the construction of its abandoned 5-star hotel and hunt for investors overseas as well as complete the a state Dry Port are projects that will not only reduce unemployment but increase revenue for the state, Gov. Lalong says.

Speaking yesterday at the flagoff of a local trade fair in Jos, the governor represented by his Deputy, Sonni Tyoden sued the cooperation of citizens and the business community toward the advancement of the state.

An earlier speech by the Chairman of the 2018 Trade Fair flag off ceremony, Amb. Ignatius Longjan had sued for peaceful coexistence among citizens to enable businesses flourish in the state.

The Fair according to the President of the Plateau State Chambers of Commerce, Mines and Agriculture (PLACCIMA), Bulus Dareng is organized to bring exhibitors from different places together to showcase their products and meet their customers for direct sales and interactions, which is believed to be a productive business strategy.

The opening of the event featured the launch of the maiden edition of the State owned business magazine, "The Plateau State Business Hub".

The State Governor represented by his deputy led the State Assembly Speaker, Rt. Hon. Azi Madaki, the State Commissioner of Information, Yakubu Dati and other dignitaries to unveil the publication which is expected to be produced annually.

The Fair is expected to last till the 28th of October, 2018.

RE: I Will Never Allow Anyone Who Loses Election Claim Victory - JT Useni Again On LG

"JT USENI HAS SHORT MEMORY OR SOME PEOPLE HAVE FORGOTTEN THEIR HISTORY"

JT Useni The Military Man turn democrat has  forgotten what he did to Ponfa Banda in Langtang North and Francis Kwarpo in Mangu, when they won chairmanship elections under CPC, Can he go to equity with clean hands?
When did he become a democrat?

During the Abacha era, there were political parties registered to kick-start return to  civil rule. UNCP, DPN, CPC, PDM.
The late Ezekiel Yusuf was the state chairman of UNCP a party supported by the federal government and as FCT Minister, Useni was it's overseer.
The CPC was chaired by Nicholas Selven Musa, with Chief SD Lar as leader.
Local Government elections were conducted CPC won in Langtang North and Mangu LGA.
But based on orders from Useni, the two were not sworn in, those of UNCP who lost were declared.
The case went to the  tribunal and judgement given in favor of CPC.
Even then, it took time to  execute.
It's a case well known. So for Useni to vilify Lalong is just cheap talk.
He was the first to introduce this type of thing to the state.
Karma has a way of catching up with people and the evil that men do live with them these days.
PDP and JT Use I have no moral right to question LALONG on whatsoever.

PLATEAU PEOPLE SHOULD NOT BE DECIEVED,THE DEVIL YOU THINK YOU KNOW IN LALONG IS BETTER THAN THE UNHOLY ALLIANCE ANGEL S IN JT USENI AND JANG UNDEMOCRATIC ELEMENTS.
JT  Is not a Democrat and they are part of the problem that we face in Plateau Today.
If you don't know where you are coming from you will never know where you are going.
#KNOW YOU HISTORY PLATEAU CITIZENS,IT WILL HELP YOU SHAPE YOUR FUTURE.
#Munatare Munashak

2019; Ortom, Tambuwal, Dankwambo, others to lead Atiku campaign with Saraki as DG

The National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has confirmed the appointment of H.E Dr. Bukola Saraki as the Director-General of the Atiku campaign organization.

A statement on Tuesday by Kola Ologbondiyan, the National Publicity Secretary of the party also lists H.E Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, the Governor of Sokoto State as Zonal Coordinator, North West.

H.E Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo, the Governor of Gombe State as Zonal Coordinator, North East.

Similarly, Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State is listed as the Zonal Coordinator, North Central.

The South South campaign according go the statement is to be led by Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers State.

H.E Ayodele Fayose, the outgoing Ekiti State Governor is Zonal Coordinator, South West while H.E Engr. Dave Umahi is Zonal Coordinator, South East.

Others members of the team are  H.E Kabiru Tanimu Turaki SAN, Chairman, Legal Matters and H.E. Emmanuel Udom - ​Chairman, Fund Raising Committee.

The NWC will make further announcement on the composition and structure of the PDP Presidential campaign, in due course, the statement says.

JT Useni again on LG Polls: I will never allow anyone who loses election claim victory

Sen. Jeremiah Useni, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship flag bearer for Plateau State says the party is considering a court action against the government and electoral umpire in the State over last week's Local Government elections which were declared in favour of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

Useni told MKB in Jos, Tuesday that he was personally uncomfortable with the conduct of the elections and would not allow such as Governor of the State.

"I will not allow anyone who does not win an election to be declared as the winner," he said.

He vowed to ensure due process and compliance to laid down rules in the administration of the State in the interest of democracy.

Useni had earlier issued a statement condemning the declaration of APC candidates as winners of the elections in 13 Local Government Areas with the exception of Langtang North and Mangu LGAs where the elections were declared inconclusive.

In the statement published by MKB last weekend, the Senator Plateau Southern Senatorial zone in the Nigerian National Assembly accused Governor Simon Lalong of the state as encouraging impunity, injustice and breakdown of peace.

Plateau 2019: JT Useni to unveil Deputy today

The Plateau State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Gubernatorial candidate, Sen. Jeremiah Useni is expected to announce his running mate today.

Sources in the Party say Useni has been engaged in series of consultations since his emergence as flagbearer of the party, which are expected to climax today

Although no clue was given on the list of possible candidates for the post, a Central Plateau political group called PDP Central Patriotic Front had called for a "highly qualified" running mate as the party's central zone Chairman, Hon. Benedict Shignuhul should be considered.

Not only is Hon. Shignuhul a pragmatic, passionate, creative, humble and honest leader as it believes, the group said no one possess qualities that best represent the generality of yearnings of the Plateau people.

A statement by its spokesman, Mr. Dan Sharing equally highlights matchless loyalty and dedication to the party as part of the outstanding qualities that qualify him for the position.

"We urge the Party look inward to a man who has constantly lived the values that make our party great and represents the best of who we are. 

"Nigeria and indeed Plateau are confronted with difficult times. In the face of these great challenges,  we cannot afford to experiment with amateurs and mediocre leadership as we have today," the statement says.

The group in the statement insisted that the state desires a "vibrant" Deputy Governor who would inspire youths and energize the party.

New Bassa LG Boss to fight insecurity

Newly elected Chairman of Bassa LGA, Plateau State, Chindo Gona has vowed to fight insecurity and guarantee safety of citizens.

This follows violent protests by opposition groups in the council and other parts of the state after the declaration of the results of last week's Local Government elections in the state.

The results which favoured the ruling All Progressives Congress party were objected by the opposition party supporters who burned and destroyed properties in violent protests.

The LGA has equally witnessed violent attacks by suspected herdsmen, leading several deaths and displacements.

The new LG boss however aims to unite all groups within the LGA and ensure that peace returns to the communities.

His first priority he said would be to address all issues arising from the just concluded elections that led to him emerging winner. 

The right channel to addressing grievances he said is the law courts, calling against sponsoring protests by "thug", which he feared could draw the council back.

LG Polls: Ban on protests stands, Plateau Govt warns

The Plateau State Government says its earlier ban on  public procession in all parts of the State is still in force.

Consequently, no persons should engage in any form of protest  until further notice, the State Commissioner of Information, Yakubu Dati said in a statement, Monday.

The decision according to Dati is to prevent "miscreants and unpatriotic elements" from hijacking any protest to further inflict pain and hardship on innocent citizens.

The reminder comes few days after Local Government elections favouring the ruling All Progressives Congress sparked widespread riots in parts of the state.

Dati who had accused the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP of sponsoring the riots said the judicial arm of Government has set up a local government election petition tribunal and an appeal committee to deal with any petition that may arise from the "peaceful local government polls" in thirteen local government areas of the state.

The tribunal according to him was set up by the chief Judge of Plateau state, Justice Yakubu Dakwak before the elections which held last week Wednesday.

He therefore calls candidate that feels aggrieved over the result of the election to approach the tribunal rather seeking self-help through protests.

He expressed the government's appreciation of the democratic right of citizens to protest but said the administration also has a duty to protect lives and property.

The Commissioner solicited the cooperation and support of citizens to ensure that politicians do not use them to achieve "selfish ends."

News Flash: Suspected herders kill 3 near Plateau State University

An overnight attack near Plateau State University, Bokkos yesterday left three people dead, local sources say.

The attack in Maijankai village, around the boundaries of Barkin Ladi and Bokkos Local Government Areas was believed to have been carried out by Fulani herdsmen.

Those killed according to local sources are Mr. Caleb Daniel, Mr. Nandom Istifanus and Mr. Mabur, surname unknown.

No suspect has been arrested and no comment has been obtained from officials yet.

Missing General: Army to pay N50m compensation to detained journalist or face legal battle

Last week's detained Plateau State correspondent of The Punch newspaper, Mr. Friday Olokoh has given the Nigerian Army authorities 48hr ultimatum to file a written apology in addition to a N50million compensation over "unlawful arrest, grievous assault, inhuman and degrading treatment," by soldiers from the 3rd Army Division, Jos.

In a petition to the Chief of Army Staff dated October 10, 2018, council to Mr. Olokoh, Barr. Olisa John Tochukwu of the E.H Ugochukwu Chambers regretted that the petitioner is a seasoned journalist and Senior Correspondent with Punch Newspapers authorised to cover Nigeria Army and it's activities but was arrested and subjected to "assault, humiliation and inhuman treatment" while working on a press statement from Col. Kayode Ogunsanya, the Deputy Director of Army Public Relations in 3 Division.

The petition reads, "Our brief revealed that on Saturday, October 6, 2018, our client received a statement from the Nigerian Army through  Col. Kayode Ogunsanya, and decided to immediately work on it and dispatch to his employers while taking his dinner at Anne Breeze Restaurant, Rayfield area Jos, Plateau State.

"Our client arrived the restaurant before 9:pm but while working on statement and waiting for his dinner to be served, three truckload of Soldiers fully masked led by one Captain Rabiu invaded the area, arrested our client and many others without giving our client any reason for the arrest.

"Our client promptly identified himself as a journalist but was ignored.

"Our client was informed that the SPECIAL SQUAD from Maiduguri was deployed by you for his arrest.

"He was later taken to the 3 Division of the Nigerian Army Headquarters in Rubuka Barracks, Jos, and kept in an uncompleted building where ALL HIS BELONGINGS were confiscated and held incommunicado.

"His plea to be allowed to communicate with his family or his editors was refused as the soldiers threatened to waste him if he does not keep quiet.

"Our client was kept in the most dehumanizing condition with more than 30 other persons and made to urinate or pass faeces in the same room.

"The next day, he was interviewed more than 5 times by Military police officers who kept him at constant watch. Several photos of his were taken as well as his house address.

"It took the intervention of Col. Kayode Ogunsanya, the Deputy Director of Army Public Relations in 3 Division Army, who sent him the press statement to work on, before he was released."

Based on the above stated "facts," the Council demanded "A written unreserved apology for the treatment meted to our client and immediate payment of the sum of N50,000,000(Fifty Million Niara) as compensation."

Failure to comply within 48 hours from the time of receipt of the letter which is however unspecified, Barr. Tochukwu threatened to "immediately" commence "cogent legal action" against the Army Chief and his "agents".

Mr. Olokoh was arrested last week Saturday by soldiers said to be investigating the disappearance of retired Maj. General Idris Alkali.

The raid which was carried out near the Plateau State Government House, Rayfield, Jos, followed an earlier raid by the same army in a community located about 8km from the latest location, where over 30 people including a pregnant woman was arrested.

The Army had claimed to have recovered a car belonging to the missing General in a pond in the community, but the missing officer's wife has been quoted as saying the recovered car was not his.

The Nigerian army authorities have not reaoinded to her claims or released the detained suspects except the pregnant Noro Moses who regained freedom on Friday.

Missing General: Adamawa Guber-candidate, Reps oppose military crackdown, seek forensic research

The House of Representatives has called for a “professional investigation” into the whereabouts of the missing Gen. Idris Alkali by Police and the Department of State Services.

This is so that the fundamental human rights of Nigerians living in the affected communities would not be violated, The Punch reports.

A member from Plateau State, Mr Edward Pwajok (SAN), had moved a motion calling for the House's intervention in the sustained military onslaught on the community in which the General was suspected to have been killed.

In the motion co-sponsored by the member representing Plateau State's Barkin Ladi/Riyom Federal constituency in the House, Mr. Pwajok raised concern that the direct involvement of the military in the investigations was hazardous.

Pwajok told the House that while the criminal activities in the area must be condemned and thoroughly investigated, the case of missing persons was better handled by the police and the DSS in line with the extant laws of the land.

"we are bleeding"

Another member, Mr Istifanus Gyang, told the House that much as the security situation in Plateau State was disturbing, there was a “deliberate propaganda” against the ethnic nationalities on the Plateau to find sufficient grounds to blame it solely on them.

"Mr. Speaker, Hon Colleagues, let me as a co-mover of this motion join Hon Pwajok to condemn the abduction and disappearance of Rtd Maj. Gen. Idris Alkali and to call for thorough investigation so as to unveil the facts of the matter and apprehend the abductors.

"I equally call for compliance to due process of law in the investigation which ordinarily ought to be handled by the Police in consonance with sec 217(2(2) CFRN 1999 (as amended) sec 1Armed Force Act and sec 4 of the Police Act as against the current indiscriminate mass arrest and detention of civilian citizens by the Military. Occasioning severe infringement on the rights of those affected.

"Mr. Speaker, as we strive to build a nation where all citizens belong and matter, we must resist any attempt to single out any particular ethnic group or people for negative branding.

"The events surrounding the disappearance of Rtd Gen Alkali has given rise to the propagation of a narrative of prejudice and hate against the some ethnic nationalities on the Plateau.

"Mr. Speaker, the danger of this negative narrative ought to be arrested and corrected as it seeks to hold the entire community culpable for a criminal act that is still being investigated.

"We are all aware that our legal jurisprudence operates on the doctrine of presumption of innocence not presumption of guilt.

"This negative branding propaganda seeks to serve as a justification for what appears to be a collective punishment of the community through military action.

"Never before has a people suffer massive loss of lives, ancestral lands and habitat and yet subjected to an aggressive hate campaign through negative labeling, profiling criminalizing and demonization than is being witnessed against the Plateau people.

"Mr. Speaker, we are bleeding, sorrowing, grieving and burying on dead on a daily basis. There was a time we buried 500 at Dogo Nahawa massacre on March 7, 2010 in a mass grave, in July 7 & 8 2012, 101 lives including a senator and state Assembly member were massacred. Last June we buried over 230 in Barikin Ladi.

"Hardly any day passes without merchants of dead visiting including the Jos metropolis unrest of last week including students of the University of Jos.

"One critical constitutional mandate of the military is to protect and preserve the territorial integrity of Nigeria.
This House is aware through previous motions that a large territory of some LGs in Plateau State-Barikin Ladi, Riyom, Bokkos and Miango in Bassa have been and are under forceful occupation by bandits whose identity is alien to this country.

"The Military and the nation should know that our territorial integrity has been and is being violated and must be recovered!!

"Unfortunately, some persons want to turn the anguish and pain of the people into political capital by sponsoring touts on public protest to malign Plateau people including our traditional rulers.

"We advise the propagandist of anti-Plateau prejudice to instead of inflaming hate and reinforcing animosity, turn a new leave and help us heal our wounds thereby promoting harmonious communal coexistence on the Plateau. All we need is peace on the Plateau," Mr. Gyang submitted.

"handover to police for proper investigation"

The session, which was presided over by the Speaker, Mr Yakubu Dogara, passed the motion in a unanimous voice vote.

The House condemned "in strongest terms", the attacks by "criminals" in Plateau State, particularly in the northern zone, which have led to the killing and disappearance of many citizens.

The House equally sympathised and condoled with the families of all those who died in the crises and pray for the speedy recovery of all those who are injured.

A summary of the House's resolutions on the matter read in part; “Urges the Federal Government and the relevant security agencies to do everything within the law to trace the whereabouts of all missing persons in Nigeria, including but not limited to Maj. Gen. Alkali and Captain Mwankon-Gyang.

“Urges the Federal Government to use security forces saddled by the constitution with the powers of investigation of missing persons in communities, specifically the police and the DSS, to investigate professionally and respect the rule of law and human rights of citizens.

“Urges the Federal Government to put a stop to the killings, attacks and kidnapping in Plateau State.

“Urges for the release of all those who are under detention, particularly civilians detained in military barracks, and they should be handed over to the police for proper investigation in line with the due process of law.”

"military openly biased"

Reacting to this, an Adamawa State Gubernatorial aspirant of the All Blenders Party, Dr. Daniel Shaga lauded the House saying the Military's actions were a concern.

He said,  "The military in this case are the complainants; they are the police to investigate, they are the judge and jury in their own matter.

"Mr. Idris if CUPP UK has alleged strongly that the military is also the main suspect in the matter.

"Military high handedness in this matter has encouraged antagonists of Plateau State and the Berom tribe to take advantage of the disorganized situation to inflict harm and put many families in jeopardy.

"I agree with this position. The role of the military is openly biased; they are incompetent to handle such matters and they have played ignoble roles to create the false impression that Alkali was killed in Jos and his vehicle was found here."

He called on the Legislature to demand extensive forensic examination of the vehicle and all items claimed to have been “discovered” in the pond in which the General was suspected to have been dumped.

"The wife of the late General needs very serious security as key witness in the matter.

"Those who discovered the vehicle need to be fully investigated.

"The Orderly and Driver of the General who were left behind would also have something to tell investigators.

"All those who were arrested, brutalized, tortured, molested, and those whose houses were ransacked and turned upside down, and those whose items were stolen would also speak because they must be appeased.

"Those who were directly shot at and killed by soldiers in the dark days of the “investigation” must be identified and their families appeased. In the absence of justice, peace would not also be found because justice and peace are SIAMESE twins."