The war of words between Governor Murtala Nyako of Adamawa and the Presidency continued last night on genocide in the North.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, lambasted Nyako for daring to challenge President Goodluck Jonathan and said Nyako did not deserve to be a governor given his utterances in recent times.
Nyako fired back, accusing President Goodluck Jonathan of being incompetent.
The governor, who spoke through his Director of Press and Public Affairs, Ahmed Sajoh, said the response by
the Presidency to what he said was an indication that those running the Federal Government were more confused than ever while claiming to be more knowledgeable than other Nigerians.
Nyako had stirred the hornet’s nest, on Friday night, when he reportedly wrote a letter to the Northern Governors Forum, accusing the Federal Government of committing genocide in the North under the guise of fighting Boko Haram.
The Adamawa governor, yesterday, said he stood by his statement and challenged those who claim to have a better sense of history to desist from semantics and address the core issues he raised in his letter to the northern governors.
The governor, who accused the Presidency of manufacturing information to implicate innocent Nigerians, said denied the statements attributed to him.
Nyako said: “Feeding the public with untruth is becoming a new culture in Abuja. The statement on the supposed rescue of the abducted girls is enough to prove that. It is a pity that responsible and supposedly educated people could manufacture statements and attribute them to others just to create an escape route from their glaring failures. None of the statements attributed to Governor Nyako by the Presidency was ever made by him. They were all manufactured for lack of a sound counter argument.
“If indeed the Presidency is not complacent about the killings in the country, how come the President went dancing a day after several citizens were killed in Abuja? If they claim that Nyako does not deserve to be governor, are they fit to be where they are?
“When we say the Boko Haram phenomenon is phantom, we are talking based on several testimonies by the President. At one point, he said there were Boko Haram elements in his government. At another point, he said they were ghosts he could not dialogue with; yet recently, he admitted that the young poverty stricken persons so far arrested could not afford the guns they carried.
“And we say to them you have full command and control of the armed forces and security outfits with all the intelligence units, investigate their activities, expose their patrons, sponsors and strategic commanders and arrest them.
“We also challenge them to expose their sources of arms. We still repeat the earlier questions we raised: How come the insurgents move about unchallenged at night in our states under the so-called emergency rule when we have a night time curfew in place?
“How come the insurgents operate for many hours unchallenged when we have military units all over the place? How come the insurgents move with a large convoy of vehicles through routes that have 24 hours military check points?
“How come statements by the Presidency and other authorities in Abuja are always at variance with realities on ground at the theatres of conflict? We want answers not insults or empty rhetoric.”
“On the issue of creating divisions among the people, no one does it better than a Presidency that urges its backers to direct its people to implicate innocent Northerners in Bombings they know nothing of, or one whose known official uses online sources to implicate someone it chooses to hate for no just cause.
“This Presidency also encourages some of its spokespersons to speak ill of certain persons and religion without a reprimand. This is the most divisive leadership in the history of this country and it also the most desperate to cling to power even at the cost of several lives of innocent citizens. Unfortunately, it is also the most inept, confused, greedy, corrupt and incompetent regime ever
On the corruption mantra, while the Presidency is fond of asking governors to account for allocations given, we challenge them to live by the same token, declare what you got and account for it.
“After all we now have proof that certain projects which are not executed have been announced as completed such as the Hong to Mubi road in our state which the Minister of Information announced its execution at their Bauchi Rally.
“Meanwhile, someone should help us ask the President under what budget sub-head did he get the money he allegedly gave Governor Kwankwaso to bribe delegates to vote for him which was allegedly diverted. We think rather than vent their venom in insulting people, presidential spokespersons and media managers should do better by re-focusing the man to be more open minded and competent in grappling with the myriad of challenges facing the nation,” Nyako said.
‘Betrayal of trust’
In a statement by presidential aide, Okupe, yesterday, he tongue lashed Nyako, describing his letter to his fellow northern governors as senseless, unfortunate and a sad betrayal of trust by someone of his status who benefited from the country.
He lampooned the governor, alleging that he was unfit to occupy the position of a state governor. Okupe added that the governor’s letter was extremely divisive and designed to incite one section of the country against the other.
”The letter written by Governor Murtala Nyako of Adamawa to his colleague northern governors as published in some major news media is an unmitigated leadership disaster and a sad betrayal of trust by a major beneficiary of the Nigerian nation,” the presidential aide said.
Okupe continued: “The content of the governor’s letter unfortunately exposes him as lacking a sense of history as well as incapable of rising above parochial sentiments and possessing a morbid hatred for facts and truth in public discourse. It is extremely divisive and intentionally meant to incite one section of the country against the other.
”Governor Nyako claims that President Goodluck Jonathan is from the Eastern Region which according to him was responsible for the killing of northern political elites on the 15th of January 1966! This is a very disgraceful remark by the governor and a pathetic embarrassment to the Nigerian military from where Nyako derives his career antecedents. It is certainly a reflection of the governor’s ignorance and unpatriotic inclinations.
”Similarly, the Adamawa governor referred to the Boko Haram terrorist group as a ‘phantom organization’ which he believes does not exist! How hypocritical!?
”In his unwise and desperate attempt to demonise the Federal Government, Governor Nyako likened the military operations against insurgents to the activities of German dictator, Adolf Hitler! In his befuddled mind and apparent hallucination, the Federal Government should be held responsible for the activities of insurgents in the North East and the sad killings,wanton destruction, murder and kidnapping of school children as well as other horrendous activities of Boko Haram should be hung on the neck of the Federal Government!
He therefore invited his colleague northern governors to join him to sue the Federal Government. This definitely defies common sense and portrays Mr. Nyako as unfit for the hallowed position of a state governor”.
By Soni Daniel and Henry Umoru