Due to speculations of a rift between Bar.Simon Lalong, the Executive Governor of Plateau State and Bar. Solomon Dalung, the Honorable Minister of Youths and Sports, which was rumored to have climaxed at the just concluded Goemai Cultural Day celebration in Shendam, where both parties were invited and Dalung was alleged to have disrupted protocol with siren and thugs, the Special Adviser to the Minister has come out with a press statement debunking the rumour, except below;
Against recent attempts to create mistrust between Governor of Plateau State, Barr. Simeon Lalong and Hon. Minister of Sports and Youth Development, Barr. Solomon Dalung, it’s apparent that the new ‘Change’ ideology which roots is going deep into the body politics of Nigeria and is bodily being absorbed by Nigerians is yet to register with a handful few who believe it’s still business as usual.
This sad development was made obvious by an advertorial scripted by a faceless and nameless ‘Southern Plateau Group’ that seem bent on solving a problem where non exist. The advertorial was supposedly a call to President Buhari to call Hon. Dalung to order for, among other things, arriving late at the ‘Goemai Cultural Day Celebration’ held in Shendam on the 26th December, 2015 something the faceless group represented by one Sule Dandam considered a serious breach of protocol albeit, erroneously. The Hon. Minister was also charged with the ‘offense’ of arriving at the event in a ‘long, siren blaring convoy’.
Ordinarily one will not waste time responding to the poorly scripted allegations but for the serious effort deployed to drag both the names of Hon. Minister Solomon Dalung and Governor Simon Lalong along with their offices in the mud. Apparently the author of the release was left far behind in the scheme of things in Plateau State to know the cordial relationship built on mutual trust that exist between the two elders of the State.
It should be noted that there is a very cordial relationship between the Minister and the Governor and the impression that the Minister was at the event uninvited was as mischievous as it was fallacious. Hon. Minister Dalung was at the event on the personal invitation of Governor Lalong whose insistence for the Minister to attend made him cut short another engagement in another part of the State midway to honor the Governor’s invitation for the two to project the needed image that will consolidate the gains of the last six months in moving the State forward.
But for the insistence of the faceless group to plant seeds of discord between the two, the speech of Minister Dalung at the event where he solicited for support and understanding for the new government in Plateau State by highlighting the decayed administrative and physical structures inherited by Governor Lalong alongside a huge debt profile for the state while also, confirming the impossibility of rescuing the state from the effects of 16 years of mismanagement in just 6 months was enough to suggest a robust relationship between the two.
Perhaps, it’s the idea of a new Plateau State devoid of the usual crisis which some devilish people use to water their pockets that’s giving Sule Dandam and his faceless group sleepless nights hence, the diabolical attempt to create a phantom scenario of distrust between the two good friends so as to revive the discarded unholy agenda of servicing ‘political mechanics’ with the scarce resources that kept Plateau State way below what should be expected of its enormous human and natural potentials.
To even assume Hon. Minister Dalung will do anything that will distract this regime at any level, be it Federal, State or Local, to say the least, it’s an excessive expression of poor understanding of what he stand for as a politician, what he aspires for as a leader and what he dreams for as an activist and a social justice crusader. Equally, Hon. Dalung’s modest approach to private and public life is quite in conflict with the picture of a PDP era of ‘long, siren blaring convoy’ depicted by the ‘out-in-the-cold’ nameless group all in their effort to give life to a conflict that exist only in their fertile imagination.
But to cynics, by now it should be clear that all hands are on deck to restore the thoroughly abused Nigerian State, something Hon. Minister Dalung is sparing no effort to assist Governor Lalong achieve in line with a larger APC agenda to put Plateau State back on the mainstream socio-political Nigeria. It’s the wish of the Hon. Minister that people should give Plateau a chance of exploiting its potentials by reflecting on the lost chances and joining hands in constructive relationship with those in position of leadership rather than creating unnecessary discords for the purpose of feathering their nests.
Plateau State can only achieve a decent place in Nigeria only when we elevate the State over and above our sentiments, whims and expectations of personal benefits. The task ahead is gargantuan and requires patriotic support of all segment of the society to achieve meaningful result. In any case, the new message of the ‘Change philosophy’ blowing in the air is enough to tell everyone that we are beginning on a new slate hence, we must discard tricks of the old and imbibe new civilized methods of doing things to make things happen positively.
In line with this, this is an appeal to the public to put their trust in God and their leaders and avoid doing things inimical to the development of the State. While wishing all a happy and prosperous new year, the Hon. Minister also pray for unified Plateau State that will flourish under a new and great Nigeria in the making.
SA Political to the Honourable Minister of Youths and Sports.