Renewed criticism of the governor’s choice and the aftermath was made in a statement by General Secretary, Lamela Umaru, for Tangale Community Overseas (USA, Canada, the UK, Germany, and Australia) which was made available to Newsdiaryonline.
According to Umaru, “Speaking of peace, we reiterate that events of the last two months in Tangale land were the personal choice of Gov. Mohammed Inuwa Yahaya whose ego has misled him to a path of lawlessness. We, the Tangale people will continue to raise our voices and draw the attention of the world to the recalcitrant actions of the governor and call for justice to be meted on him. We continue to document his crimes against humanity by our press releases. We know that sooner or later the hand of justice will catch up with him.
“We are glad to report that the United States Congress, the US Department of State, and Africa Command are aware and paying attention to the ongoing genocidal acts against the minority tribes of the Middle Belt Nigeria committed by power drunk state actors like Gov. Inuwa Yahaya.
“We invite the International Criminal Court and Human Rights organizations to pay attention to the specific actions of the government of Gombe state, including the Commissioner of Police for Gombe state, who is a federal security officer working in cahoots with the governor, and the High Court justice of Gombe state.
The statement said the “acts include random arrests and detention for four weeks (and counting), of the District head of Todi, young men and women to include a nursing mother and a very sick man; the imposition of curfew on Tangale land for more than four weeks, the deaths of five people because of the governor’s overturning of traditional elections that resulted in violence, the wanton destruction of property, and the imposition of a stooge on the Mai Tangle stool, among other crimes.
“Let it be clear that the Commissioner of Police has the choice to follow the rule of law but chose to work with the governor as a partner in crime. If either he or the governor thinks their actions will not find retribution, we remind them of leaders like Augusto Pinoche of Chile who was indicted in 1998 for human rights violations committed in his native Chile years earlier.
“Not only did the police and judiciary in Gombe deny bail for the arrested individuals in four weeks, but they also denied bail for the nursing mother and sick person even on humanitarian grounds. This is an unpardonable crime under the watch of the Commissioner of Police.
“Our cry is that we be left alone to govern the affairs of our traditions and culture as made clear in the current Gombe state Chieftaincy law. The longer it takes to revert the unwise decision of the governor to interfere in our tribal selection of our traditional ruler, the more criminal acts by the state are added to the list. We continue to maintain that our tribal identity cannot be surrendered to the state.
According to the group, “The imposition of a puppet of the state on the Mai Tangle stool is an act of interference in our way of life and customs. The attempts by Gov. Inuwa Yahaya to woo our… people will come to naught. No amount of money can buy our identity and we have neither the appetite nor the desire to entertain the theatrical displays of a puppet.
“Our traditional kingmakers chose Dr. Musa I. Mai Yamba for a reason. They know what quality leadership looks like and they know how to look forward to a better future for their land by electing him. The mere fact that Gov. Inuwa Yahaya thinks tribal communities are properties of the state indicates his shortsightedness and ignorance of history. Consequently, history is about to put him in the annals of criminal dictators who committed human rights violations.
“We laud the National leadership of Tangale Community Development Association (TCDA) for its press release following the council meeting on Easter Monday. We note specifically, the fact that it speaks for Tangale people and has distanced itself from the recent rumor that another Caretaker Committee was formed by the impostor on Mai Tangle stool. We recognize and accept the decision of the council to extend the term of the Caretaker Committee for another six months. We look forward to working with the leadership on behalf of our people and the Tangale nation. We also applaud specific individuals like Reuben Bauna, who have dissociated themselves from the subversive acts of the stooge in the so-called Caretaker committee formed by some members of the traditional council. We persuade every person approached by the impostor to decline any offer of positions made in the name of Mai Tangle. The TCDA was not formed by the traditional council or Mai Tangle in the first place, and it has a working constitution that guides its decision-making including the appointment or election of its leaders.
Earlier the group, expressed “gratitude to the almighty God for the successful celebration of Easter last week. It was refreshing to see tens of thousands in Tangale land remember and celebrate the most important event in history. It is clear from the celebrations that no amount of hostility and wielding of the sword by the state can force the heart of our people to “emperor worship.”
“To that end, we encourage our Muslim brothers and sisters to approach their very important religious pillar of Fast of Ramadan with humility and contrition, knowing that both our religions require such acts from the heart as we seek the attention of God almighty. We wish you a peaceful and fulfilling experience as you focus attention on the annual event with fellow Muslims worldwide. We assure you of our love and prayers throughout the month of Ramadan.”