The Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Alhassan, has accused the Taraba State Government of maltreating and intimidating some perceived supporters of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Senator Alhassan, who was the APC candidate in the 2015 governorship election in the state, made the allegation during a press conference in Jalingo, the state capital yesterday.
The minister expressed her displeasure over the alleged discrimination, harassment, and intimidation of APC supporters by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led administration in the state.
According to Senator Alhassan, a number of civil servants and local government workers identified as APC supporters had been victimised, while some had been denied their salaries by the state government.
She, therefore, vowed not to identify with the Darius Ishaku-led government in the state until it changed its alleged hostile attitude towards APC supporters.
“As you can see, I deliberately refused to inform the government officially of my coming”, she said.
The minister, who said all citizens, including the civil servants, have the right to belong to a political party of their choice, wondered why such right was allegedly being trampled upon by the government officials in her state.
She urged the governor to see himself as the governor of Taraba State and not the governor of only PDP supporters, saying the collective unity of the state was more paramount than the interest of a few who practiced politics of “winner takes all”.
Reacting to the minister’s claim, the Chief of Staff, Administration to Governor Ishaku, Mr. Rebo Usman, dismissed the allegations that the APC supporters were being victimized or discriminated against in the state.
Usman challenged Sen. Alhassan to produce the list of the APC members who were being victimised, describing the allegation as “a figment of the imagination of some members of the party who were bent on running down the PDP government”.
While stating that the people of the state were now benefitting from the politics of Governor Ishaku, the chief of staff wondered why the APC leader in the state was making such statements.
He noted the fact that President Muhammadu Buhari had sent two ministers to the state prior to the coming of Alhassan showed that the president was more interested in the needs of the people than party politics.