The Anaguta ethnic group in Jos North local government area of Plateau State Monday accused Governor Simon Bako Lalong of sidelining them in his political appointments and rewarding ‘non indigenes’ with political appointments originally belong to the group.
The group under the Anaguta Youth Movement in a press briefing claimed that the Anaguta people were the original founders and owners of Jos North LGA but lamented that the Lalong administration had failed to appoint an indigene of Jos North LGA as a commissioner as was the case in the past.
It was learnt that the group was reacting to Gov. Lalong’s appointment of Malam Muhammad Nazeefe, a Hausa, as Commissioner of Information to represent Jos North LGA.
Hon Nazeefe was once Minority Leader in the State House of Assembly representing Jos North-North between 2003 -2007.
The spokesperson of the movement, Jonathan Nyam said all previous administrations including the military had recognised the Anaguta people in terms of political appointments especially as regard to membership of Plateau State Executive Council as well as other sensitive appointments in the State but said the Lalong administration has failed to follow the ‘right’ precedent in honouring the ethnic group.
Nyam said “The present administration has deliberately and craftily failed, refused and neglected to follow the right and proper precedent and solid foundation laid by the previous administration in recognising and honouring the Anaguta people. This is because this administration did not appoint any Anaguta person as Commissioner from Jos North LGA as done in the past. More amazing and worrisome is the fact that even in the appointment of membership of the Transition and Implementation Committee into the Jos North LGC, an Anaguta man was only appointed to a paltry position of a Supervisory Councilor”.
Reacting to the allegation, the Special Adviser to Governor Lalong on Media and Publicity, Mark Longyen, said it was unfair for the group to accuse the present administration of marginalisation stressing that the Anaguta were not the only ethnic group in Jos North.
“We have the Afizere, the Hausa, Berom and Anaguta in Jos North and any of these groups can provide a member of the State cabinet. So if the Anaguta people have enjoyed the position in the past why not allow the other groups that also have massive voting population to be represented. The governor has said that more political appointments will be made so I advise them to be patient and wait their turn”, Longyen said.