A Christian Group Known as Liberation for the Christian Faith (LCF) in Gombe state has rejected Governor Mohammadu Inuwa Yahaya lists of Commissioners Nominees over what it’s described as marginalisation of the Christians in Gombe state.
The leader of the group Pastor Waziri Salisu, a clergy with the United Methodist Church in Nigeria who made this available to newsmen in a press statement, noted that out of the seventeen names submitted by the Governor to the Gombe state House of Assembly for confirmation, only two persons are Christians and all the rest are Muslims.
He said in a state where Christians constitude almost fifty percent of the total population of the people in Gombe state, it is unjustifiable to have only two Christians commissioners out of seventeen commissioners nominees.
” It is very obvious that Christians in Gombe state have been marginalised under the leadership of Governor Mohammadu Inuwa Yahaya, and this marginalisation did not start today, since his first tenure as Governor of Gombe state he has been marginalising Christians in the state with his policies and utterances. For instance, in his first term in office, Justice Beatrice L. Iliya, being the most senior judge in the state Judiciary then was suppose to be the Chief Judge of the state but the Governor vehemently refused to confirm her because she is of the Christian Faith, also his utterances after the Billiri crisis undermined the safety of Christians in the state, when he said “How Many Christians will they kill if inter-religious crisis erupts in the state” today the Christians in Gombe state have no voice due to sharp marginalisation” He said.
Pastor Salisu, noted that the lists of commissioners nominees sent to the Gombe state House of Assembly for confirmation is loop sided as it does not represent inclusive governance.
The group called on the Gombe State House of Assembly to halt the confirmation process until the Governor review the lists to accommodate more Christians in the commissioners nominees lists.
“Since the creation of Gombe state on 1st October 1996, it has been Muslims who have governed the state and the Christians in the state have enjoyed fair representation in all sectors in the state, until the tenure of Governor Mohammadu Inuwa Yahaya where Christians have no voice in the state, with little or no representation, as we are experiencing in this recent nomination of Commissioners in the state.
“Just recently in neighbouring Taraba state, Governor Dr. Agbu Kefas nominated 21 commissioners and about ten of them are Muslims despite the dominance of Christians in Taraba state, why can’t Governor Mohammadu Inuwa Yahaya learn from his colleague In Taraba and other states? Nominating two Christians to be commissioners in a state where you have Christian constituting almost fifty percent of the total population in Gombe state is unjustifiable”.
He stressed that the group is mobilising its members across the state to demonstrate a peaceful protest to the Gombe state House of Assembly if the Governor doesn’t review the lists to accommodate more Christians Commissioners Nominees.
“Gombe state is not for the Muslims alone, it belongs to all the faiths as such we demand that Christians should be given equal rights to occupy juice positions in the state.
” We want to also make it very clear that we have seen the hand writings on the wall, on the efforts of the some forces within the state government circle, who are plotting to see that a Christian is not nominated as minister in President Tinubu cabinet, so we are using this platform to also request that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu should not entertain any request to denial any party member who have saved the party faithfully from becoming minister because he is from the Christian faith”. He added.
Pastor Waziri Salisu however called on the Christian Association of Nigeria Gombe state Chapter to act and protect the rights of Christians in the state by speaking out on their behalf.