Kaduna State: Patiently Expecting The ‘Return Of The Native’


The Oasis Reporters

July 23, 2018

Arc. Barnabas Bala Bantex, Kaduna State deputy Governor.

It’s been a little over 3 years when our own Arc Barnabas Bala Bantex and his boss were elected Deputy Governor and Governor respectively under an unwritten but largely observed arrangement which provides that since Kaduna State has 2 major political blocks North and South these appointments should be cognizant of this reality in the sharing of political appointments.. But because the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria did not assign any specific roles to a deputy governor it will be mischievous to blame the Arc Deputy Governor for having been also largely obscure. From the onset, we had hoped that since the duo are professionals in fields related to the construction industry, our Kaduna State had gotten the best combination for the task of “Making Kaduna State Great Again ” for this was the dominant theme in the campaign manifesto which brought them to power.

There is always a danger in any endeavour that is not well thought out particularly so, if such an endeavour has to do with providing leadership to a people as diverse and complex as my Kaduna State . Leadership, we must agree is an arduous task but not an impossible one because leaders before this present team did make a success of it.

The El Rufai regime has turned the unwritten arrangement of sharing political appointments on its head acting entirely based on the dictates of his warped conscience. He sees nothing wrong in clustering the architecture of governance with his immediate and extended family members as well as friends and cronies. The greatest error we committed back in 2015 when we voted for the current leadership of our State is that we voted for a political neophyte who had no business with leadership, at best he needed to be led. There was no template for providing leadership for the population in Kaduna State which is why this supposed democrat immediately started behaving and acting as a bull in a china shop, breaking virtually every piece of chinaware in his view.
A much elderly person while lamenting the decision to vote for in his carefully chosen adjective ” This Evil Government “.regretted that the El Rufai dictatorship laid off about 5 members of his immediate family from their jobs without their dues paid. The responsibility for catering for the families of the 5 who lost their jobs has become his own at old age and in these very difficult and hardy times. I could not attempt a defence even if I wanted. This precarious situation this elderly man narrated cuts across virtually all families in Kaduna State as every family has been affected by the reckless and inhumane sacking of workers in our State.

This post essentially is not about the dictatorship in Kaduna State but about our own son who served as deputy governor in the dictatorship.

As mentioned earlier, we were in the circumstances comfortable with the deputy governorship position and by this arrangement we had every reason to expect that since our own son will be at the sharing table, we will get our due. It was not long after taking office that it became clear that the dictator was out to wage a war of sort against our people. In spite of the security challenges that our people in Southern Kaduna had to contend with, the belligerent and combustible rhetoric by the dictator who had clearly drawn up his battle lines.

As if it was a prior arrangement, the genocide started in Kaura LGA to which the deputy Governor is a native. As his people were burying their dead, the deputy Governor maintained a deafening silence that was at best, embarrassing. Our grieving population took their case on social media to have the civilized world know about what had and was continuing to happen. I personally heard the deputy Governor complain that our people were reacting from a victim’s mentality. I tried making meaning of what was meant by “acting from a victim’s mentality”. Could it have meant that our people should have gone out to celebrate the killing of their own brethren?
It is possible that the decision making architecture in Sir Kashim Ibrahim House was acting on impulse rather than on careful analysis of events. Nobody can say if the deputy Governor was aware if the decision to undertake the payment if compensation mainly to foreign herders not to carry out reprisals in Southern Kaduna not long after their taking the oath of office.

Some of us began to wonder if the deputy Governor had any business at all in Sir Kashim Ibrahim House. He was deliberately made irrelevant in the scheme of things. It is alleged that his personal staff were routinely changed not at his requet and also his input as to who the replacement would be.
If this allegation is true, it clearly means in my honest view that he had unofficially been declared a persona non grata as they call it in diplomatic circles. At this point again in my humble view the choices were clear for him to ether throw in the towel or continue to inhale the stench. .Arc Barnabas Bala Bantex, Kaduna State Deputy Governor chose to remain and to continue inhaling the foul air of Sir Kashim Ibrahim House. By this choice he made himself both ineffective as well as ineffectual and his political sunset was not far off. Only Arc Barnabas Bala Bantex can justify why he remained part of a government that hardly recognized he was on-board. I have mentioned this incident once in an earlier post but will mention it here again as a truth that the deputy Governor that Arc Barnabas Bala Bantex still is rather preferred, occasionally directing his firepower at his people when he took exception to the position of SOKAPU on the RESTRUCTURING DEBATE. Bantex preferred that our views ought to have been channelled through our so-called representatives in the House of Assembly. Bantex chose the path of dishonour by remaking a part of this government largely to feather his little nest while forgetting the larger Southern Kaduna nest. It is a very difficult undertaking deciding who between the deputy Governor and our not so honourable members in the State Assembly who is more ineffective and if you wish, ineffectual.

The last outing of note if it happened at all between the deputy Governor and some invitee stakeholders from the stables of the Southern Kaduna APC was said to have been called for among other reasons to brief the stakeholders on what was likely or unlikely to happen before the curtains fall on the El Rufai dictatorship. The stakeholders were said to have been tasked to test the political space in Southern Kaduna for the possibility of Arc Barnabas Bala Banged contesting for the Zone 3 Senatorial ticket.

Because he has largely been disconnected from the Southern Kaduna People for much of the time spent as deputy Governor, I cannot expect him to know what the feelings of the people of Southern Kaduna are about his performance as deputy Governor. For a truth, time is far spent and I can emphatically surmise that the people of Kaduna State have already seen and passed through the worst that this government can possibly inflict on them.
We are already thinking of and about the RECOVERY AND RECONSTRUCTION of our State after the LOCUST and VULTURES are gone. We know an astute politician of repute who currently is a sitting Senator who has the capacity of arresting the slide into the abyss and to start and sustain the REBUILDING of our State institutions recklessly pulled down by the dictatorship. For now, we from the southern part of our State are beginning to think over how we shall be receiving our own Barnabas Bala Bantex after the curtains have fallen, which is what I meant by the Return of the Native in the heading of this post.

When eventually Arc Barnabas Bala Bantex will be packing his bags we, who will be on standby to welcome and receive him but we must first like to know if he will have a stop over in his native Kaura or he will overfly to the Plateau. A lesson we as a people must go away with is that the moment anyone settles for, and is comfortable and content with less than he or she actually deserve, such must settle for far less which has been the case with our own son of the soil in my humble view. This has been a recurring decimal in the manner the business of governance in Kaduna State has been crafted as groups and individual efforts must effect a CHANGE.

Written by Col. Gora Dauda (rtd).

R-APC Chairman, Kaduna State.

Greg Abolo

Blogger at The Oasis Reporters.

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