Mr. Suntai did not talk to the media but some of his associates, who were at the airport, said he was “mentally alert” and fit to recognize people by names.
John Dara, a friend of the governor’s, said that the governor he saw was alert with his memory intact.
“We were excited to see him and it is understandable that after the long trip, he was weak and tired,” Mr. Dara said.
“But, we were thrilled by the fact that he recognized everyone by name which shows that he is mentally alert and lucid.”
He said the governor’s mental alertness indicated that he was capable of taking over the affairs of the state.
“That itself is a clear indication that he is capable of running the affairs of Taraba as the governor.
“We had no doubt in our minds that when he gets back to Jalingo today, it will be up to his doctor to say whether he will resume today or in a couple of days to come.
“But he is clearly okay and able to function,’’ Mr. Dara said.
He said that his (the governor) decision not to talk to newsmen might be because of the long journey.
“Talking to newsmen can be spontaneous and organised. So, we felt that when he has rested well, it will be easier for him to address Nigerians,’’ Dara said.
Another close associate of Suntai, Rima Shamulu, said the decision to take over the ruling of the state lied with him in line with the provisions of the constitution.
“There are provisions in the constitution for you to take over or not to.
“And if he gets back to Jalingo today, and he transmits a letter to the state assembly through the speaker that he has arrived, that is all; he can take over as the governor.
“So I don’t know why there are speculations around because there is constitutional provision when someone becomes too sick to function; it is not for us to speculate.
“And with the way I saw him, he is all right,’’ Mr. Shamulu said.