Sen Sani Danladi and the mendacity of Taraba ethno-religious bigots
By Umar Jada
As expected, there is now a systematic and rambunctious clamour by some self styled elements with a sense of leadership entitlement in Taraba State to stop our amiable president, Bola Ahmed Tinubu from appointing one of the most competent politicians from this part of Nigeria from serving his motherland at a very critical and important level.
Since the name of Sen. Sani Danladi was mentioned as a ministerial nominee, these group of charlatans and selfish politicians have in a very spectacular manner deployed all manner of lurid and coarse tales from the pit of hell to arm twist president Bola Ahmed Tinubu into changing his mind.
In their desperation, they resorted to peddling of cheap lies, blackmail and misinformation against the former governor in their uncanny desperation to intimidate the president into dropping his name.
But behind their saintly hubris, lies a pathological ethno-religious hatred which is the major inspiration behind the sustained vitriol and angst against Sani Danladi not any of his inadequacies.
In their warped thinking, these group of politicians who rightly believed that Taraba State is a christian colony, will go to any length to ensure that their crusade to ensure that the chances of a Muslim like Sani Danladi is completely nixed come what may.
In their bid to frustrate the selection of Danladi, these cantankerous and Ill mannered politicians went gaga and used all manner of subterfuge bereft of tact and finesse to stop the nomination. But in doing so, these elements gave themselves away by promoting Senator Emmanuel Bwacha, a renowned christian whom they dressed in saintly borrowed garbs and projected as the best replacement, should Tinubu hearken to their ill-fated counsel.
In a homily addressed to president Tinubu published by one online medium Taraba Facts, these self styled politicians spoke about Sani Danladi using pejorative and denigrating language to make him look too bad to occupy such a cozy position in Tinubu’s administration.
Although any discerning citizen of Taraba State knows that the rationale behind their sustained tirade against Danladi is basically on ethno-religious grounds, the group deployed some crafty tactics to defray any such thoughts by projecting an array of other names including those of Muslims from which Tinubu can pick his minister.
But unfortunately, their quest was dead on arrival as the name Bwacha they brought into the mix as their preferred choice for the ministerial job was by far lowly and inconsequential.
It is a great undoing for any one to try to match the two names if accomplishments, political sagacity, popularity and value addition are the prerequisites behind the appointment of ministers. Thus making their rather unfortunate and sordid voyage to suffer serious, moral and integrity setbacks.
In fact, the whole mission backfired on their very faces due to their inability to see beyond their noses. And that is what happens when people place their egoistic and whimsical interests above national interest.
It should be stated in very clear and categorical terms that if value, popularity, name and impact on democracy are the yardsticks with which the acceptability of politicians is gauged, then one can say without hedging or the fear of being contradicted that the difference between Sani Danladi and Emmanuel Bwacha is like the difference between day and night or more aptly the difference between light and darkness.
But one interesting thing about president Tinubu is that when he made up his mind to embark on something, no level of intimidation, mendacious lies, blackmail or mischief will make him to backtrack.
It is also important to state that the same elements who are now clamouring to be in Tinubu’s government are the same people who attacked the religious identity of his ticket and opposed it with unprecedented vile.
Tinubu lost Taraba State in the last presidential election on the premise of the Muslim identity of his ticket despite the fact that Tinubu’s running mate, Kashim Shettima hails from the northeast zone. It is apt to state that the mission of these unapologetic bigots has again kissed the dust.
In their blind and malignant desperation to weaken Danladi’s chances, these retrogressive elements ridiculously held unto myths and hallucinations that the supreme court has barred Sani Danladi from holding a political office for 10 years on account of forgery.
How low some people can go to achieve their selfish motive is simply harrowing. But as God usually does things, their desperation to prevent Danladi from getting what was destined for him hits the brick wall because their actions portrayed them as people without conscience and education because any man with either conscience or even basic education cannot touch what they did with a hundred miles pole.
But while clearing the air on such mischievous allegation, Senator Sani Abubakar Danladi, described the cock and bull story as the pigment of the imagination of his detractors who are simply petrified by his outstanding and superlative democratic credentials.
Danladi, who spoke through his lawyer, Mr Ujah Israel Ujah, said the story was not only meant to put him in bad light but to also present him as ineligible for the position for which President Bola Tinubu has nominated him in the eyes of the approving agency.
Describing the story as a false representation of events, the nominee noted that the case indeed came up on March 6, 2019 at the Federal High Court, Jalingo Division as delivered in Judgment in Suit NO: FHC/JAL/CS/1/2019 between Usman Udi & 3 Ors. Vs. Abubakar Sani Danladi and Anor, wherein he, Senator Sani Abubakar Danladi was disqualified from contesting the gubernatorial election of Taraba State in the 2019 General Election.
Adding that on appeal against the decision to the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court, the appeal was struck out for being incompetent.
“However, at page 20 of the Supreme Court’s Judgment, His Lordship, Peter-Odili, JSC (as she then was) held thus: “Learned Senior Counsel for the appellants had sought to lead the court to the earlier situation relating to the cause of action at the trial court by contending that the trial court itself had no jurisdiction to determine the matter in the first place if Section 285 CFRN is applicable since the cause of action arose on 25th October, 2018 a point not disputed and the Originating Summons filed on 9th January 2017 which made the action filed 76 days after the accrued cause of action, instead of 14 days provided by Section 285 (9) of the Constitution.”
He added that premised on the findings of the apex Court, Senator Danladi commenced an action before the same Federal High Court, Jalingo Division to set aside its earlier decision on the grounds that the Court lacked the Jurisdiction to have entertained the suit in the first place.
The Court he said found merit in the case and on October 15, 2021, set aside its earlier decision as being a decision given without jurisdiction.
The Defendants in SUIT No: Fhc/Jal/Cs/10/2021 Between Abubakar Sani Danladi Vs. Usman Udi &5 ORS thereafter filed a Notice and Grounds of Appeal to the Court of Appeal, Yola Division, which was later withdrawn.
Ujah said: “Giving all these facts, it is clear for the blind to see and audible for the deaf to hear that there is no subsisting judgment of any court in Nigeria disqualifying our client from either contesting an election or barring him from holding any public office.”
With this explanation, it is very clear that Sen Sani Danladi has no skeletons in his cupboard but the same thing cannot be said of his accusers who should bury their grotesque faces in shame for trying to misled the president on account of selfish ego trip.
Jada writes from Yola.