The National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF) has noted with concern the flagrant attempt to subvert the tradition and will of the people of Tangale ethnic nationality in Billiri Local Government of Gombe State by the Gombe State Government. This is another clear indication that democracy, in every form, is under threat in Nigeria.
According to the tradition and customs of the Tangale nation, the kingmakers are mandated to elect the new Mai Tangale through a voting process. In the present exercise, three candidates who vied for the traditional stool received votes from the 9 kingmakers as follows:
Dr. Musa Idris Maiyamba - 5 votes
Alh. Ahmed Magaji - 2 votes
Alh. Danladi Sanusi - 2 votes
Section 19(1) of Gombe State Chieftaincy Law states as follows: “Upon the death, resignation, removal or deposition of an Emir or a Chief the Governor SHALL approve the appointment of an Emir or a Chief on the recommendation of the Council of Traditional Kingmakers of the Emirate or the Chiefdom.”
It is therefore surprising that the State Government has so far, failed to announce Dr. Musa Idris Maiyamba as the new Mai Tangale. The people of Tangale have embarked on protests which unfortunately led to the death of people on the ground that Government wants to announce its candidate that did not win the election process.
This is another case of abuse of democracy which has been the bane of Nigeria and is responsible for the distress that has engulfed the entire country. The Gombe State Government should not promote the government of minority over the majority, the classic modus operandi of anti-democratic forces in Nigeria.
The Government of Gombe State should remember that Nigeria is a democracy and not Sharia theocratic state. Therefore, the will of the people must remain sacrosanct.
NCEF is therefore calling on Governor Alh. Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya to adhere to the principles of democracy and announce the appointment of Dr. Musa Maiyamba as the new Mai Tangale according to the recommendation of the kingmakers of Tangale kingdom in the interest of peace, justice, and fairness. It is the right of the people to choose their leader.
National Christian Elders Forum (NCEF)
25th February 2021