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The Governor of Taraba State Dr Agbu Kefas has installed and presented Staff of Office to Barr S...

Why Am Supporting Bwacha, Aaron Artimas Writes


The call came on Monday afternoon, July 25th 2022. It was my younger brother and professional Colleague, Hon (Dr) Mark Bako Useini. He had an important message to deliver and he pointedly informed me that Distinguished Senator Emmanuel Bwacha had requested me to serve in his Gubernatorial Campaign Council as the Director, Media and Publicity. 


I was not by any means surprised that, Dr Useini will deliver such a message to me because, over the years, we had enjoyed a very mutually respectable relationship to the extent he had expressed deep worries about my lack of desire to join the Darius administration, when he was an influential member of the regime. On one occasion, he drove to my house and offered to drive me to Government House, for an audience with Governor Darius; but I turned him down.


However, the request to work directly with Senator Bwacha came with mixed feelings. No doubt, within the past two years we had resumed fraternal conversations and infact the Senator had sent me a remarkable assistance during my son's wedding in October 2020. But, I never expected that he will request my personal assistance in his courageous effort to thrown his hat in the renewed effort to salvage Taraba State from its current trajectory to a state of perdition. As the former spokesman for the UTC regime, I had come into serious collision with the Distinguished Senator, to the extent that one day, my uncle, the Late Barau Banti Nyaku, of blessed memory, summoned me to the house and warned me to stop attacking Senator Bwacha because he was one of his great benefactors. I assured him that there was nothing personal between us.


Those who have followed Taraba's infamous and perfidious history in the past eight years may recall the dangerous war of attrition for the soul of Taraba State. On the opposing trenches of the war, were those who wanted to appropriate the opportunities thrown up by Late Governor Danbaba Suntai' unfortunate situation and those who fought to preserve his legacies by ensuring a less chaotic or rancorous transition programme in the event that Governor Suntai did not recover enough to fully resume his position. The struggle came to be dubbed ''a war between, Umar UTC, the then acting Governor and the cabals''. As the most senior elected politician in the state, Senator Bwacha made it a responsibility to ensure continuity and protect politicians or public officers whose positions were threatened by any drastic changes in the political dispensation of the state. Soon the issues degenerated to a religious and regional conflagration, threating the unity of the state and throwing Taraba to the front burner of national discourse.


At the end, the UTC regime seen as an interloper or usurper, lost out, while the so-called cabals claimed victory. Bwachas's revolution had installed a new set of leaders, but they were strange faces. The landlords have been driven away by strange tenants who now superintend over the political affairs of Taraba state spreading sorrow, deprivation and pains. 


The political atmosphere in the state is now like the day after the crucifixion. The mood illustrates the situation of those helpless disciplines on "the road to Emmaus" (Luke 24:13-24), who were walking away from Jerusalem, discussing hopeless inanities and despair. From civil servants who are uncertain of their salaries, pensioners worrying about pension enrolment and gratuities as well as Local Government Councils whose offices have been completely closed down and young graduates who are not sure of what to do with their hard earned certificates; the story is the same, hopelessness and despair. Like a page from a Nazi book of propaganda, the Taraba State Government, revels in monumental lies, hearsay, and make believe to brainwash and hoodwink the people into thinking that there is still a government in Taraba State. Every known institution in Taraba State has collapsed; the public service, education, roads, agriculture, and infrastructure, like Jolly Nyame Stadium, Specialist Hospital, Hotels, Markets, Housing Estates and Government buildings. If you are emotional, avoid these places, otherwise you will end up with rivulets of tears from the realities of a failed state and lost opportunities. But, God cannot abandon his people forever, no matter our shortcomings. Sometimes, God allows certain things to happen, to teach lessons and throw up heroes.


There is a Hausa adage, which says that ''only the man who tamed a hyena can untame it''. To this extend, the best person to unlock the monstrous political debacle imposed on the state in the wake of this hopelessness is Senator Emmanuel Bwacha. Yes, him. He has the moral obligation to do so, because having fought vigorously to install this unknown government he has been handed a divine obligation to right the wrong. He has been chosen for this task, because he knows better the principles behind the foundation of Taraba State. As one of the most experienced grassroots politicians, he knows that Tarabans are not religious and tribal bigots. This same Taraba gave wide support to Jolly Nyame, Alhaji Usman Bibinu, Dr Shiaki, Idris Waziri, etc, irrespective of their tribes or the size of their accounts. He had made a strong case to opt out of this government of unknown persons when he became convinced that it was not what he fought for. No one in all sincerity of collaboration in the current suffering of Tarabans. Bwacha was a party Executive, Member House of Assembly, Commissioner, Member House of Representatives and Senator, without a financial war chest. This is the Taraba we know. Whether he made the mistake of alluding to regional politics in his desperate struggle to fight injustice in the state, now is the time to make amends. He knows everybody and everybody knows him.  


Yes, if indeed, our previous fight was for the peace, progress and unity of the state, then we need to regroup and salvage it from its present despicable condition. Taraba State urgently needs us to unite and save our people. It is for this singular reason that I have wholeheartedly accepted to work with Senator Bwacha. It is about Taraba State. At some point in time, I became so emotional about the state, I wondered if it can survive this monumental management and failure; and if ever somebody can do the job, then who? Therefore, I want to praise and appreciate Senator (Dr) Emmanuel Bwacha for graciously granting me this opportunity, amidst misgivings or doubts over my well known position on the North & South divides of Taraba politics. I had become so contemptuous of issues concerning our dear state that, in the words of my dear friend the Late Hama Bachama, Humon Asaph Zadok, ''I am wondering, whether in a confusing and dire situation like this' if was capable of hiring myself''. Taraba is at the crossroads of desperate and insidious political uncertainty led by a narcissistic leadership. We are now in a state of political emergency. We can't afford the luxury of tribal, regional or religious difference. These are tools of the devil.


Assuredly, God is on the throne; He will make it possible. We move.


Hon Aaron Artimas,

Director, Media and Publicity BGCC


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