Today, I intend to do what people generally do not do. I just pray that you have the patience to follow me with an open mind. I intend to talk from both side of my brain and inner conscience to address the manufactured imagination that held our people hostage from free thinking. In our present times, image, whether rooted in reality or illusion is everything. It is all a question of perception. By this I mean how majority of the population view someone or something, a group, a place or belief. Therefore to find the answer to this frustrating question, we must reason beyond petty sentiment. We must interrogate ourselves, go back to history and give it an honest outlook rather than bombardment.
Tike—Secretariat road is located in Sangassumi ward of Ganye LGA, where Hon. Namdas was raised, received his primary education and now occupying a house of residence in ‘secretariat’ under the same ward. My late father purchased his first plot of land in secretariat as well on 12th February 1999. Now my father’s house and Hon. Namdas house is less than 200miters away on the same road, the only thing between them is one house, culvert and Sangassumi Primary Health Care.
In my 15th April 2021 tribute post tiled “17 YEARS OF EXIT: The vacuum of Aunty Wukumi still in our hearts” I explained the geographical nature of ‘secretariat’ from early 2001 to 2004 while I was staying with my aunt in the house. I remember the state of the road in 2002 when I was attending Atiku Abubakar Model Islamiyya primary school Ganye, the road was always eroded whenever there is rain due to poor drainage. After a downpour, the water passes through small gullies which is then conveyed to a dogged drainage within the forests linking up to the bridge in ‘Kasuwan Dare’ to ‘Anguwan Barade’ down to the river. I use to cross the Fadama forest of secretariat to enter ‘Anguwan Jada’ then pass Ganye Prison (Now Ganye correctional center), Area Court and Ganye LG secretariat to reach school. My uniform always get dirty before I reach home. Sometimes I lost my shoes to the muds, gullies or ponds in the Fadama. At that time, the Secretariat road was bedded with red soil and ‘marmara’, the road is frequently saturated with water in the wet season and become rocky in dry season, making it difficult for motorist to pass especially those whose car is close to the ground. Hence, no one wants to acquire land not to talk of building them in that area. I still wonder why my dad made up his mind to build there, but here we are today.
The socio-economic importance of the road cannot be overemphasized because it endures more than it was meant to. Firstly, the road is the shortest route to Ganye International Cattle market and Ganye new market. Nomads coming from Cameroon with their livestock have to follow the road for ease passage to the cattle market. Trucks full of livestock (Predominantly cattle) go in and out of the market on and off market days, some transported to the Southern part of the country, while some are retained within the state. Secondly, the road is the only highway that link the western part of the town with the others, market women from Yebbi, Yelwa, Saman, Kanisuye, Sabon Kasuwa, Tudun wada, Dadiri, Nitel, and Ganye-2 have to follow the road to buy or sell commodities in ‘Kasuwan Mata’. Thirdly, rural merchants from the famous Jangani mountain, Arnado debbo, Daksami, Gurumpawo, Dabora, Sansiri etc, path the road with agricultural commodities especially yam, tree crops and livestock to the new market and cattle market. Fourthly, Heavy trucks (Tipper) conveying sand from the river also follow the road to deliver it to Kanisuye—Sabon Kasuwa—axis. Fifthly, the (Tipper) Union have their head office where they mostly park near shekabara junction, which is adjacent ‘kasuwan mata’ in Ganye-3 all in sangassumi.
The road (From Ganye-3 to cattle market or Tike) is always busy from Friday to Sunday. While the upper area (From Tike-juction to sabon kasuwa road) only get busy on Saturdays. But since the road consistency is the same, the overstressed side ruptured more. After the construction of the road, the area started to develop gradually. People started to buy plots and build houses. The road merely spent 1 year, although the road was not up to standard, but the drainages were well constructed.
The reason I highlighted the past, is to help the reader corroborate my relationship with Tike—Secretariat and what I am about to say in order to perceive some convincing thoughts in regurgitating the subject matter
Now let us dwell into the core issue. Last week, I saw a debates on social media that drew my attention. It appears that people corrupt their minds and souls; they force such practice into others including their subordinates and ordinary citizens (Public) too. As experience shows over the years, the ordinary citizens find themselves handicapped in using their own sense when electing their leaders. That is why people keep telling you that Atiku Abubakar failed to reconstruct ‘Numan-Gombe’ road and the road to his hometown ‘Jada’. With that, he was criticized and rejected by his own people and here we are with SGF and FCT minister. Appointments their son was supposed to give had it been they forgive him. But they depends and believe in what other people say, even if the people are clear extremist.
For instance they said “the road that pass in front of Hon. Abdulrazak Namdas house (Tike—Secretariat road) is not good, and he (Namdas) as member house of Reps, could not reconstruct the road and therefore he does not deserve to be Governor of Adamawa state”. I felt sorry for the ordinary citizens who will agree wholeheartedly without giving it a second thought and use it to discredit him. As a ‘Public Interest Advocate’ that was why I took my pen, not to defend him (Namdas) but combat the information manufacturers. Let’s see it realistically.
1. Secretariat road was originally constructed by ‘WORLD BANK’. It was surveyed in 2004 by Inter-governmental affairs and special duties assessing erosion mitigation and control. The road was then awarded to ‘YASAKOMA CONSTRUCTIONS’ in 2007 then supervised by ‘Upper Benue River Basin Development Authority’. Not H.E. Admiral Murtala Nyako as people are guessing. People know that it shelf-life cannot sustain it task, but the public and elites chose to ignore since its WORLD BANK. They believe the institution cannot be objected. The public mindset is that ‘Da babu gara ba dadi’ that is why the politicians use cosmetic majors in addressing our problems. We must learn to object decisions that does not solve our problems permanently, not until is too late. For Example in my March 15tah post about ‘Yidi Ndiyam’ community borehole, I said “the NGO’s offered to drill a Wall-Concrete Well (Rijiya) for the community, but I declined the offer because motorist-borehole is their permanent solution”. My reason is that a typical villager will not see the difference between well (Rijiya) water and the riverine one, and if the well is dogged, the NGO will not award a borehole again. But now, they promise to mobilize fund for the borehole.
2. In the last two (2) years of Hon. Martin Babale as Reps i.e 2009-2011, the road has started rupturing, the Ganye-3 area has already damaged. But Since Hon. Martin is not contesting for an upper political position at that time, the public gave him immunity. No one called him to the rescue. Besides, there are key roads that needed construction and reconstruction in Ganye at the time such as ‘Aguwan Jada’ and ‘Old Market’ roads and i believe they had been poor since early 2000 while Hon. Martin was in his first tenure as Reps, the roads are still poor till date.
3. From 2011 – 2015 when Hon. Ahmed Nwangubi (Fons) succeeded Hon. Martin Babale, no one spoke about the road either until he finished his tenure in the National Assembly. We had similar roads that needed construction within the 4 LGA’s. We had Tike-road in Mayo-Belwa, we had Duta-era road in Jada but we never spoke about either of them, he may have lobbied for one but did we? Were we sleeping when he finished his 4 years?
4. Hon. Abdulrazak Namdas later succeeded Hon. Nwangubi from 2015-2019 before Hon. Namdas won his reelection in 2019. Throughout his first tenure, people were silence about the roads and no public office holder in the chiefdom was held accountable. Are we not following the road every day? We should’ve called him or Senator Ahmed Abubakar Mo’allayidi, the man we regretted voting out. Who singlehandedly, lobbied through the ‘Ecological Fund’ to repair Sansiri—Gurumpawo road and Gagwari’s square. I am sure he has the upper hand as a senator, but sadly no one called.
5. The member representing Ganye at the State house of assembly Hon. Alhassan Hammanjoda is now serving his second term in the honorable chamber. As a legislature, until now, I have never seen where he sponsored a bill to reconstruct a township road in Ganye. It was only in the case of the collapsed ‘Yebbi-Mbulo’ Bridge that he moved a motion of ‘Urgent Public Importance’ in the floor of the house on Tuesday 21st July 2020. I saw on 8’oclock news in TV GOTEL. It corresponded with my 18Th July 2020 post where I said “I always maintained the view that the jurisdiction of the bridge lies with the state Government, the chief of staff or Advisers etc. Have nothing to do with the bridge. The road is not a federal road, hence the members representing Ganye, Hon. Alhassan Hammanjoda and Hon. Hammantukur Yettisuri Jada Mbulo will have to move a joint motion for ‘Urgent Public Importance’ on the floor of the house simultaneously” I posted this 3days before his motion. Through the state assembly, we can have our problems addressed by the state government since it is their statutory duties and it lies under their jurisdiction, not national legislatures. But no comments.
6. During the past administration, the chiefdom had His Excellency Martin Nasir Babale as Deputy Governor and Hon. Barr. Lilian Stephen Nabe who served as Commissioner for Works. To be candid, the leadership credentials of the woman cannot be disputed. In collaboration, they made sure that the Ganye township road was a reality. Still the public know that the Atiku Abubakar way and Secretariat road exist, still, they merely spoke about them.
With this reasons, you will agree with me that there’s hypocrisy among people. This road has been poor for over 7 years since before Hon. Namdas became Reps, it was poor before he built his house, it was not constructed to standard from the begging, and the serving politicians at the time did not repair it after. Then why would I blame or accuse Hon. Namdas who moved into the neighborhood less than 3 years ago? When I had lived with it my problem since 1999? He knew the state of the road but decided to build his house there, he can purchase a plot where there good road, but he came home sangassumi.
Sometimes I use to task myself with some researches, to find the answer to my arguments and this is one of them. This is my view, you can have yours. But as a citizen of Ganye and Sangassumi, i will not use secretariat road as a parameter to justify or disqualify Hon. Abdulrazak Namdas from contesting Governor of Adamawa state even though I will benefit from it more than anyone since my house is also located on the road.
As for the ordinary citizen out there, who easily believe in negative image building to justify the incompetency of contestants, I weep for them.
Mubarak Umar Dirdiu.
Public Interest Advocate.
15th September 2021.