The Drama in Nasarawa Before Adamawa


Part 1


By Morgan Omeri.


Recently, gubernatorial and state assembly elections took place across Nigeria after which winners and losers were declared. While in some states such announcement of winners were greeted with jubilation and wild celebrations, in others, even the supposed winners were afraid of the public reactions. The announced winners disappeared from the streets as such announcement were met with spontaneous protests as was the case in Nasarawa and Kaduna States.

In Nasarawa, a cross section of the voting populace was outraged. Thousands of women instantaneously trooped onto the streets of Lafia, the state capital, to protest the declaration of Audu Alhaji Sule, the incumbent as the winner.

The majority of those who came out to protest on their own violation were women mostly mothers of various standing in society. Many of them, grandmothers. While some dressed in black, others were topless. The protests had since gone viral, attracting the attention of local and international media,. During each day of the protests so far, the protesters could be heard as posted on line, invoking God’s intervention on those they believed denied them the outcome of their votes. Also, they prayed for guidance by ancestors and the intervention of elders, particularly President Buhari; from men and women of conscience and goodwill to rescue their mandate in favour of Dr. David Emmanuel Ombugadu whom they believe by INEC collation, scored the majority of lawful votes cast on the 18th of March, 2023.

Reports so far indicate that the protest had been peaceful and purposeful, and the aggrieved voices ensured that there were no dissent to any social disorder. They claimed that attaining their goal in peace and unity was one of their set objectives while the ultimate was to upturn the announcement that led to return of the incumbent as governor. This protest went on for more than 10 days without molestation of people or properties anywhere it was staged across the state, from Lafia, Akwanga and Karu progressively. The peaceful protest took the form of walk, interfaith prayers and exchanges of messages of comfort and assurances among themselves, laced with hope that their candidate will take up the case further at the tribunal and obtain justice therefrom.

A few days into the protests, the Nasarawa State Command of the Nigeria Police Force NPF issued a public announcement banning the women from protesting in the State alleging that its action was based on “credible intelligence” on threats from hoodlum and members of the APC who planned to unleash violence in the State Capital. Most political analyst were surprised at the police action which runs contrary to constitutionally guaranteed right to peaceful assembly, freedom of association and expression as well as peaceful protest. Despite the threats to these hapless mothers/patriotic Nigerian citizens, the police decided to withdraw its personnel assigned to protect the protesters instead of swiftly effecting the arrest of these identified criminals based on their supposed “credible intelligence”.

In defense of the ban, the state commissioner of police Maiyaki Mohammed Baba who alleged that the force was in possession of credible intelligence on the plan to invade the otherwise peaceful protest and turn it to a violent one, neither revealed the identities of the criminals nor arrested, rather, in response to a question by his host on channels TV, he said the Force was waiting for the criminals to commit the offense before arrest since according to him, it was a rumor. Maiyaki is reputed to be an intelligence tactician. He acted on what he described as credible intelligence (rumour) to order a ban on peaceful protest by obviously harmless women who were only carrying placards and posed no danger to anyone. No one was apprehended. As a follow up answer, he admitted on Channels TV that there were killings in Toto (280km) from Lafia that morning of the interview and the criminals were yet to be apprehended but was waiting for one to happen in Lafia before he can now effect arrest. Kai.

The brave mothers dared the hoodlums and defied the threat to their inalienable constitutionally enshrined right to protest. They opted to help the police as the force of conviction that is driving their protest was stronger that any threat, real or imagined. Eventually and having been cornered, the Commissioner in the same interview, said the women were free to protest but he will not give them police protection. The brave women continued unhindered by fear.

In the heat of the storm, the Governor of Nasarawa state was reported to have travelled to Saudi Arabia for hajj. Meanwhile the protesting women of Nasarawa continued their protest peacefully and prayerfully. Curiously, on return from Hajj, the Governor was welcomed by a band of yes men and bootlickers sycophants into the waiting hands of shenanigan loyalty some of whom included a certain strategic Director of Information and hired thugs, who suddenly found their voices and trooped out with placards protesting against the women and threatening to rape them because their nakedness aroused their urge to do so. This open threat has escaped the eagle eye of Nigerian Police in Lafia. The governor is back!

In respond to these open threats, the mothers resolved to continue their protest because according to their spokesperson, many of them including their girl child have already been molested and raped in front of their helpless husbands on the farms or on their way there by bandits some of whom may have included the thugs hired by the government of the APC to do so, explaining further that it was the inability of both government and police to protect them that festered their commitment to the PDP candidate whose past achievement speaks for him insisting that their passion is borne out of deep frustration. Therefore, no hardship or threats of that nature can deter them as all they seek for is justice. The spokesperson said they had planned to suspend the protest since they are now aware that their candidate has lodged a petition at the elections tribunal.

One is wont to think and believe the that prayers of the Naked mothers is beginning to have effect on these randy untamed boys hence the open threat to rape their mothers in public while the police looked the other way. Meanwhile, we are aware that this randy boys protest was organized and funded by the state government therefore, clumsy as it was, one could notice a choreographed nature of the narrative with an attempt at translation into local languages. Recall that these same people alleged that the mothers were ferried in from Kaduna and Plateau States to protest in Lafia. Suddenly, these foreign mothers can understand (Alago, Kwandara, Mada, Afo, Migili, Eggon) etc among some of the local languages in which the hired minions chose to communicate with them. Mr. governor, the quacks handling your psychological operations are too ineffective.

The defiance which most discerning observers will see on the faces of the protesting mothers is a reflection of a right not done while attempts are being made by the powers that be to force a government down the throat of those who voted and know who they voted for. At this point, now that the case is at the tribunal, our simple appeal is for the candidate who scored the majority of lawful votes on March 18, 2023, be declared winner and returned elected. In the same vain we turn to God that the tribunal will prove the antagonist wrong this time by looking carefully at the INEC result and the pleadings in order to declare the rightful owner of the people’s mandate. Meanwhile we advise the people, especially supporters of our party and candidate to be weary of satanic movements by those who are already boasting that they can manipulate the law and have their illicit way. The high and low should just remember the prayers of our mothers!

We look towards justice from their Lordships not favour, peace from our leaders not hate, unity from the people not division as is currently being promoted by the obvious enemies of Nasarawa State. We still believe that a fair deal is possible in Nigeria. So help us God.

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