Mai Tangale: Protesters demand announcement of winner of kingmakers selection 

Gombe State Government has declared that it will not go ahead with the announcement of new Mai Tangale unless the protesters clear off the road and allow peace in the area. 

The State Government through a press statement by the SSG, Professor Ibrahim Njodi Abubakar stated that “Until normalcy is restored in Tangale Chiefdom, it will be difficult for Government to make any pronouncement on the issue.”

The  terse statement issued to journalists late Wednesday evening contained that, “Following the development taking place in parts of Billiri Local Government Area, the Gombe State Government wishes to categorically state that it has not pronounced a New Mai Tangle because the process has not been concluded.

“Accordingly, all persons who engage in the blocking of roads are advised to withdraw with immediate effect.”

It will be recalled that earlier on Wednesday there was Massive tension in Billiri and its environs following the refusal of the Gombe State Government to announce a successor to the late Mai Tangale, Late Buba Maisheru II who died about a month ago. 

Consequently, people of the Chiefdom on Wednesday took to the street to protest the inability of the government to give then a ruler demanding immediate action before lawlessness takes over. 

Following the protest by the majority of which are women wearing black attires who came out in their hundreds in the early hours of the morning, blocking the main road leading to Yola, Adamawa State thereby obstructing vehicular movement for a couple of hours before passage.

Our correspondent gathered that the women who suspected a foul play in the nomination process of a new Mai Tangale, are protesting the non-announcement of the new monarch whose election was concluded Monday morning.

Already, Police are seen in all major areas of Billiri town, getting ready for any breakdown of law and order.

However, a press statement by a group that goes by the name Tangale Community Overseas, is calling on Governor Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya to immediately announce Dr Musa Idris Mai Yamba who is believed to have worn the election.

According to Lamela Umaru Lakorok, General Secretary of the group, the Gombe State Chieftaincy law 2021 must not be misunderstood or misappropriated.

He said, “the law in part. VI number 20(1) says, upon the death, resignation, removal or deposition of an Emir or a Chief, the Governor shall approve the appointment of an Emir or a Chief on the recommendation of the council of traditional kingmakers of the Emirate or Chiefdom.

“The governor may consult the State council of Emirs and Chiefs on the appointment of an Emir or chief,” he quoted.

He said in the case of last Monday’s election for the new Mai Tangle, Dr Musa Idris Mai Yamba received more votes than the two other candidates combined.

Suspecting a foul play, the group said, “the idea that a Governor of a given State can decide for a tribe who should be their leader, ignoring their traditions and customs is laughable were it not so absurd.

“Twisting the Law is an assault on the sovereignty of the Tangale people. Therefore, we call on the Gombe State legislators and the judiciary to uphold and interpret the written law and allow its full implementation in the current setting”, he stated. 

They also called on the other candidates who contested along with Dr Musa Idris to do the honourable thing and follow the traditional norms by congratulating the winner of the election.

The group further said that “it would be against custom and etiquette for either of them to accept an appointment to the throne of Tangale by anyone other than the Tangale people. That will be tantamount to betrayal of confidence and respect of the people they purport to love”, they stressed.

They said, with patience, they await the announcement by the Governor as they do not encourage any behaviour or actions that will be counterproductive to the cause of peace in Tangale land.

It will be recalled that the Mai Tangale, late Buba Maisharu II died after spending 15 years on the throne and process of selecting a successor had been on since then but it could not be concluded due to interest from different quarters. 

All government officials contacted on the development declined comments. As it is now, palpable fear has gripped residents of the area who want the state government to do the needful.

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