By Teddy Nwanunobi
Abuja (Sundiata Post) — Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has described Senator Joseph Waku as “a clownish alarmist” for claiming that he (Bello) had a hand in the alleged assassination attempt on Senator Dino Melaye.
Bello, who spoke in Lokoja through his Director General on Media and Publicity, Kingsley Fanwo, maintained that Nigerians are not surprised at Waku, adding that he would not succumb to efforts at distracting his administration from the “noble New Direction Agenda aimed at repositioning the State and recovering it from the ruins of the past”.
“Waku should not see Kogi as his fishing point in his efforts at being heard after decades of obliviousness and irrelevance. He should not misrepresent the highly respected Arewa Consultative Forum, an organisation that is committed to the development and unity of the Northern Region of Nigeria.
“His assertion that the North will hold the Governor responsible, if anything happens to Dino is reckless, unsubstantiated, uncharitable and indefensible. Waku should apologise to the people of Kogi State for his wanton allegations and also to the Arewa Consultative Forum for allowing his uninformed position embarrass the noble organisation.
“Sen. Dino Melaye’s alleged attack is currently being investigated by the Police. Waku should explain to Nigerians the reasons behind his desperation to pin the Governor to the allegation. By this act, Waku has shown how low he has gone over the years in his business of courting unnecessary controversies.
“Senator Dino Melaye knows the implications of alleging that Governor Yahaya Bello was behind the attacks in him. He won’t toe that line because that will be too hot for him to handle. Governor Yahaya Bello has made criminality difficult in Kogi State. He abhors criminality and would not condone any act of brigandage either against Dino Melaye or by Dino Melaye as the Chief Security Officer of the State.
“We are not ignorant of Senator Dino’s plans to make a whirlwind spring out of tea cup and we are too focused to join issues with him. Nobody will be allowed to disturb the peace of Kogi State. His efforts to make Kogi ungovernable will fail because the people of Kogi State are behind the Governor.
“But if Dino actually said that, he will have to prove that. It is an insult on the sensibilities of Kogites to play politics with the rot in the civil service. The present administration in the state will ensure a holistic reform in the civil service. Without the reforms, Kogi will be suffocated to death. Governor Yahaya Bello had nothing against Dino. If Dino has issues with him, he should speak up because the Governor is a peace loving person.
“Governor Yahaya Bello is not known for controversies or blackmail. He is prepared to work with people who have the interest of the state at heart. He will never subscribe to blackmail by people who see Kogi as a big elephant that must be shared. We are undaunted by the ongoing comedy but we shall never compromise the security of Kogites.
“Those who think the Governor could be intimidated to submission should have a rethink. He is focused on the task of serving the people of Kogi State. The people know their real proponents who are selfless and modest. We shall make our position known after the Police investigation of the incident. I reiterate that Kogites know the truth about the matter.
“Sen. Dino Melaye is not the only Senator in Kogi State. But while others are empowering their people and complimenting the efforts of the State Government, Melaye was stirring controversies both at the National Assembly and in the state. His call to insurrection cannot see the light of the day. If he wants to speak for the voiceless, he should have sold one of his multimillion fleet of cars to provide food for them first. You can’t swim in an inexplicable wealth and still claim to be speaking for the masses. I am sure if the Governor had agreed to share the ‘elephant’, all these drama wouldn’t have ensued.
“The Government of Kogi State is not interested in any mud fight and will therefore not join issues with professional blackmailers. This government was the first to publish its bailout funds and the accounts where the balances were kept. Transparency and accountability are the hallmarks of our government. We are with the people and the people are with us,” the statement said.
He urged Kogites to remain solidly behind the Governor as the current war is as a result of the Governor’s refusal to share the Commonwealth of the people with those who think they could constitute themselves into a cabal for corruption and diversion of development funds.
“They are not fighting for the people but their bellies. They want the Governor to share the money he is currently using to build roads, hospitals and schools to them. But the Governor insisted he will use Kogi resources for Kogi people. The people of Kogi know these facts. They can’t be fooled,” he said.