The State of Plateau as a platform seeks to promote democracy on the local level by bringing the fore issues concerning the State, and facilitating citizens debate on public issues, through participation in government decision making.

Plateau LG elections and matters arising

By: Yakubu Dati

5th October, 2021.

Following the landmark judgement by Justice Yakubu Kunda at Jos High Court, the stage is now set for the Local Government elections in Plateau State on Saturday. 

The People's Democratic Party (PDP) had approached the court to stop the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission from conducting the LG polls but the Judge had dismissed the suit challenging the exclusion of the PDP by PLASIEC  from participating in the October 9 elections. 

The State electoral body had excluded PDP from participating in the polls following the judgment earlier obtained by a former member of the National Assembly, Bitrus Kaze and 11 others and relying on the said judgement, the state electoral body refused to supervise the  the PDP congress which threw up the part's candidates for the Local Government polls. 

Justice Kunda had while delivering his judgment held that PLASIEC was legally right to have refused PDP nomination and expression of interest forms for the said election as the PDP had failed to abide by the judgement of Justice S. P. Gang of November 20, 2020 to dissolve its state executive committee and conduct state congresses. 

Having exhausted the legal options, the PDP is now resorting to its familiar antics of instigating crisis through misinformation for political gains. 

It in this context that Barrister Yusufu Pam's outburst is being viewed with suspicion. 

Pam had in a widely publicised "private advice", called on Governor Lalong to  "suspend the LG elections (especially for Jos North); to avert the looming risk of state-wide political unrest." 

But this comes as a clever attempt by the former governorship aspirant to relaunch himself to political relevance, after years of political hiatus. 

His resort to stoking the ethnic and religious fault lines with reference to Jos North elections is a disservice to the memory of our mother, Ngo Elizabeth Pam, who gained national prominence through her stance on justice, fairness and inclusion irrespective of tribe or religion. 

But the October 9 LG polls is in line with the PLASIEC Law signed into law three years ago giving sufficient notices to all interested parties to participate by going through specified processes. 

At the Flagoff of the Local government elections in Shendam, Gov Simon Lalong enjoined citizens to come out and exercise their franchise in a peaceful atmosphere. 

This opportunity at fairness and for promoting democracy and the rule of law is what should be encouraged and Plateau State cannot be held back on account of one party that failed to abide by simple court order but chose to disregard the rule of law. 

As the saying goes , we move...


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