Lalong Declares Interest in Second Term

Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau has formally declared his intention to contest 2019 governorship poll in the state.
Lalong made the declaration at Plateau All Progressives Congress (APC) stakeholders meeting in Jos on Friday.

The governor said that the declaration was as result of the intense pressure from the people of the state for him to recontest.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Edward Pwajok, Member Representing Jos South/Jos East at the House of Representatives moved the motion for Lalong to recontest.

Pwajok’s motion was unanimously seconded by voice vote from stakeholders at the meeting.

Mrs Pauline Tallen, former Deputy Governor of Plateau, Mr Pam Dung Gyang , former governorship aspirant, Malam Samaila Makama, former Chairman, National Population Commission and several others paid glowing tributes to Lalong for successfully contributing to the growth of Plateau.

They appreciated Lalong for steering the APC in the country away from crisis following his committee’s report which gave an amicable solution to divergent views concerning the tenure of the party officials.

Mr Letep Dabang, Plateau APC Chairman, later told newsmen that the party strongly supported the governor’s declaration.

Dabang, however, said that other interested candidates on the party’s platform were free to contest the position.

He said that contesting was a right of every party member and that the party would provide a level playing ground for all.

“We cannot stop anybody from contesting but for now Gov. Lalong is the one that publicly declared to contest.”

He said that the stakeholders meeting was convened by the party leadership to brief members of the resolutions reached at the last National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja on Monday.

NAN reports that present at meeting were the Deputy Governor, Prof Sonni Tyoden, National and state House of Assembly members, members of Plateau Executive Council and many other party men and women.

Plateau State Governor Dissolves All Members Of His Cabinet

Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau state on Thursday dissolved the state cabinet and ordering the permanent secretaries of the various ministries to take over

This was revealed in a statement by the governor’s director of press, Mr Emmanuel Nanle, in Jos.

The statement read: ”Governor Simon Bako Lalong of Plateau State has dissolved all commissioners in the State executive Council directing them to hand over to permanent secretary in their respective ministries.

”Governor Lalong thanks them for their services to the state and wishes them well in their future endeavors.”






I Forgive Lalong For Comments On Grazing Law – Ortom

Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom has reacted to the comments made by his Plateau State counterpart, Mr Simon Lalong, about the prohibition of open grazing in Benue.

Since the law was implemented, there have been series of attacks by suspected herdsmen on some Benue communities, with dozens of people killed in the recent attacks on Logo and Guma local government areas of the state.

Addressing a delegation of the Arewa Consultative Forum on Friday at his office in Makurdi, the Benue governor said he was pained by the comments and consequently called Lalong who denied making such statement.

“Somebody drew my attention yesterday (Thursday) that he (Lalong) made such comments that he warned me not to implement the law and I was wondering if my colleague from Plateau State could say that; so I called him and he told me he did not say it,” said Ortom.

“But later, when I watched it on Channels Television, he castigated me beyond what I thought a colleague of mine should (but) I’ve forgiven him.”

Shortly after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday, Governor Lalong told State House correspondents in Abuja that he had warned his Benue counterpart to adopt ranching and not prohibiting open grazing as the solution to the clashes between herdsmen and farmers.

He had said, “I told the Governor of Benue when he was doing the law, I told him ‘why don’t you do (ranches)? Be careful, take the other steps before you start implementation; states are different.”

Benue Killings: Miyetti Allah Leadership ‘Cannot Go Scot Free’ – Ortom

in his reaction, Ortom maintained that although he had a discussion with Lalong, he never received any warning from him.

He, however, explained that even if he was warned as claimed, the decision to implement the law was taken by the people of Benue who he said he had consulted.

“At no time did my colleague warned me about this law but even if he had warned me, it was beyond me,” Governor Ortom said. “It originated from the people themselves and even if he had warned me, I would have told him it is beyond me.”

“It’s about Benue State and I’m not talking about Plateau State; that is what the Benue people want. Is there one person in Benue that is against this law? he asked the regional sociocultural group who responded “no”.

The Benue governor further recalled that instead, it was his colleague who informed him during a private visit that he was also under pressure to implement the anti-grazing law in his state.

He said he later called Lalong after he confirmed that the governor actually told reporters he had warned him but his effort to reach the Plateau governor was futile.

He said: “When I saw this on television yesterday, I tried to get back to him (but) he did not pick my call.

“I wanted to remind him, when I finally confirmed that he said it, that the last time I went to Jos for a thanksgiving service in one of the churches, on my way back I felt like paying homage to him and I did and he told me that he’s under pressure to also enact that law that he’s going to do it.”

“He told me himself; so coming back to say that, I don’t understand but all the same, let us leave all these things behind us – if we leaders begin to disagree amongst ourselves, then there is no sign of a solution to these problems,” Ortom added.

Cosmetic or Genuine Peace Under Governor Lalong?

By D’yong Mangut

Peace is a relative term. It does not mean just absence of war.

It has different layers. Societal peace, that’s the general peace among people when there is no intergroup or intra group war or crisis.

Individual peace; that’s when individual members of the society are at peace with society or government. The individual peace is largely associated to economic peace.

The intergroup peace on the Plateau is not visible yet. Plateau is seriously enjoying latent conflict been brewed by Lalong’s administration, but he has dwelled more on peace rather than economic freedom and prosperity to the citizens.

Let me focus on peace matter here since that’s the only priority of the present administration.

The kind of peace building embarked upon by the administration is rather brewing war in the State in the near future.

When ensuring peace in a multicultural society like us, Government should not attempt to appease the belligerent party against the peaceful party.

Whatsoever can be the motive of the Government, peace is a political term but achieving it should not be a means to a political end. It serves no purpose of being a Government if your citizens are killed but the Government keeps mute without bringing the perpetrators to justice

What has the State government done on land issues in Jos North that will bring lasting peace?

When will the Plateau people feel protected by its Government from expansionists?

The major issues of ethnography and religionism that have wrecked problems in the State over the years have not been settled but this administration is only concerned with shortcut opportunities to peace so that it will continue to establish a persuasive propaganda that there is peace in the state.

Peace cannot be without mutual trust!

Peace cannot be with expansionist drives.

The tinkling political side of the peace on the Plateau is that it is very suspicious that there is peace. Reasons are that, there seems to be areas where the state Government is only interested in ensuring peace. This is purely political peace.

Partisanship has blinded the idea of peace on the Plateau under this administration. I want to see a situation where the life of a Berom, Mwagavul, Tarok, Ngas, Amo, Irigwe, Afizere, Bogghom, Gomai, Mupun, Ron, Mushere, etc is precious to the State government.

This life should be protected not by so-called peace rallies, concerts, seminars, paper presentation, pitiable empathy, or mere pronouncements.

Mischief and conflict merchants should be made to face the consequences of their acts.

The individual peace perspective. It is no longer news that Governor Lalong has imbibed the culture of jamboree. He is now only interested in being seen in ‘baban riga’ going round the country with non performing Governors just for political reasons.

I have not heard of any bumper harvest on the Plateau in the last two farming seasons since his assumption of office despite our agriculture endowments. He has now become a mere Committee Governor for his party. No news of trade and commerce in the State. No news of domestic or foreign investment in the state. No sign of human development. Industrialization is nowhere to be seen. Physical infrastructure gap is worsening and widening.

The State instead of being a producer, is now a beggar state under Lalong.

We need to rethink and reevaluate ourselves. We cannot pretend that we are retrogressing.

I urge His Excellency to readjust his political lens in looking at issues in the State. It is not all about sycophancy or persuasive propaganda but having the State at heart and do your best.

While you expect just peace in the State, you should know that you have to work for it fairly and with conscious efforts.

You can’t achieve peace by robbing Peter to pay Paul.

D’yong Mangut writes in from Jos, Plateau.


Exploit Underground Water To Boost Agriculture, US Forum Tells Nigeria

As Nigeria seeks measures to diversify the economy through agriculture, stakeholders at a summit in the United States, have urged government to explore groundwater resilience programme for sustainable agricultural practice in the country.

Besides, Plateau State Governor, Simon Bako Lalong, has expressed optimism that Nigeria would come out of the present economy crunch through diversification into sustainable agricultural practices and mineral resources.

Lalong said this while addressing participants at the Ground water summit holding in Denver, United States of America.According to him, as the world is focusing on sustainable development through major intervention project and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s), there is the need to be strategic in the campaign for diversification into agriculture.He said through such vision, future generation would be positively influenced and not be deprived of their rights.

He observed that commercial agricultural practices require a lot of water for its sustainability throughout the season hence; ground water takes a lot in this practice. He stressed the need to integrate the water management practices for environmental, economical and social agricultural practices.

National President of Association of Waterwell Drilling Rig Owners and Practitioners (AWDROP), Michael Ale, urged knowledge investors to come to Nigeria for baseline information and research into the sustainable use of underground water for agricultural practices.