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Botmang: Saint or sinner?

Posted by By YINKA FABOWALE on 2006/11/14 | Views: 469 |

Botmang: Saint or sinner?


Courtesy of the dawn impeachment of Joshua Dariye as Plateau State Governor on Monday, his erstwhile deputy, Michael Botmang assumed office as the state’s new helmsman. At his swearing-in-ceremony Botmang described himself as a “child of necessity,” and claimed that what happened was unexpected.

Courtesy of the dawn impeachment of Joshua Dariye as Plateau State Governor on Monday, his erstwhile deputy, Michael Botmang assumed office as the state’s new helmsman. At his swearing-in-ceremony Botmang described himself as a “child of necessity,” and claimed that what happened was unexpected.

But not many are taking his words for it, for his further utterances on that same occasion indicated that he was only too eager for the opportunity and might have for long betrayed Dariye, the Mushere man, who in 1999 offered him a Birom (minority) man, the slot as running mate.

Botmang had said shortly after he was sworn in that he enjoyed his ticket through the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and that he would thus not dump the party.

In other words, he was distancing himself from the Action Congress (AC), the new party into which the hard-fighting Dariye and the bulk of his supporters had defected in the wake of his travails in his former party. Interpreted, Botmang was saying he supported the PDP-led Federal Government believed to be the architect and executor of Dariye’s ordeal.

This was the PDP to which Dariye dashed out huge chunk of the state’s Ecological Fund for which the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) wanted him impeached.
The bubble had burst, when Dariye under intense hostility from President Olusegun Obasanjo indicted the president and the PDP as partakers in the alleged misappropriation of funds totalling N1.6 billion, which he alleged was expended on the 2003 presidential campaign on PDP’s directive. According to the governor, the South West and South East received N100 million, the deputy Senate president, Senator Ibrahim Mantu –N10 million and the PDP national secretariat – N66 million.

Although the allegation was initially denied, Vice-president Atiku Abubakar, a Dariye-ally, corroborated it and the monies were subsequently returned.

These disclosures, which rattled the powers-that-be incensed them the more in the plot to topple Dariye, who, having been declared a persona-non grata, found his way out of the party into the AC with the horde of his loyalists including members of the state cabinet.

If the PDP must maintain its stranglehold on Plateau, it becomes obvious that a new man must be found to control the machinery of government and factors of incumbency to ensure electoral advantage in 2007. That man was found in Botmang. And he seemed only too glad to assume the office.

This seeming betrayal appears not to have been lost on the Dariye camp. Although, Botmang sat tightly as deputy governor, till the very end, he was already pejoratively tagged a “Mai jira.” That is, a PDP protégé slyly waiting to take over the seat. Indeed, sources within the state said he was almost lynched by a mob of Dariye’s supporters about two weeks ago.


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Toluwalase Samuel Olufemi(Ijebu, Ogun, Nigeria)says...

Authority belongs to God, once He decrees it is final and binding

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Ikponmwosa Osamede(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Your meaning of Osamede is wrong. Osamede means God has given me a crown