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'Opposition’ Killing Innocent People Because I Won, Says Taraba Gov

The state Commissioner for Information said the attacks were intended to give the impression that the governorship election in the state was not credible.


Darius Ishaku, Governor of Taraba State, has accused the main opposition party of killing innocent people, because he was declared winner of the governorship election in the state.

Simon Dogari, the Commissioner for Information, said this at a press conference on Friday. 

Ishaku, who contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was declared winner in the just concluded governorship election in Taraba State.

Ishaku polled a total of 520,432 votes to beat his closest rival and candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC),  Sani Abubakar Danladi, who polled 362,735 votes.

The victory at the poll secure a second term for Ishaku, who is the incumbent governor.

However, speaking on incidents that have trailed the outcome of the elections, the state Commissioner for Information said the attacks were intended to give the impression that the governorship election in the state was not credible.

Dogari said: “There have been several cases of attacks on innocent and defenceless people in Jalingo by miscreants hired and armed by those who lost the elections.

“Their intention is to create tension and anarchy in the state, such that the impression would be created that the elections were not credible.

“The state government is happy that this motive has not been achieved. We give the credit to God and to all the good people of Taraba State, who have ignored the call to arms and have, in various ways, helped to defuse tension rather than yield to the temptation to react violently.

“The elections were generally free, fair and peaceful. There were no major incidents, as voting took place in all the centres.

“It is also instructive that one of the major contestants in the gubernatorial election, Senator Aisha Alhassan, also rated the election as free, fair and credible, even though she lost.

“Yet, the main opposition group has embarked on a mission of organising armed youth to confront people who came out in their numbers to celebrate the PDP victory.

“The most unfortunate and dangerous dimension to this campaign was the religious colour their group tried to assign to the crisis. It is disheartening that a man who is aspiring to a high position of leadership of this state would resort to religious bigotry to achieve his ambition.

“Again, we thank God and the larger section of the populace for refusing to cooperate with him to cause more tension and damage to lives and properties.”

He said the Governor “deeply appreciates the contributions of all the good people of the state in achieving peace and wishes to thank everybody, including Christian and Muslim leaders, who have been part of the peace building process.”

The state government said it would ensure that all law abiding people are protected in order to go about their lawful activities without molestation.

“Governor Ishaku also wishes to remind all of you that peace is the bedrock on which every positive human endeavour can thrive, hence his peace mantra: Give me peace and I will give you development.

“We urge you to refuse to be used as political thugs, to shun violence and all forms of drug abuse and to support the government to build that future you deserve.”