A former governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang, on Wednesday described as a lie a report by Zuma Times (a publication in Hausa language), which reported that the ex-governor swore that the Hausa/Fulani “will never rule Nigeria again.”
The rebuttal by Jang, now the Senator representing Plateau North in the National Assembly on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, was contained in a statement issued in Jos by his media consultant, Clinton Garuba.
The statement reads, “The publication by Zuma Times Hausa (online) dated February 12, 2018, claiming that Senator Jonah David Jang, the Senator representing the Plateau North Senatorial Zone in the National Assembly said the Hausa/Fulani would never rule Nigeria again came to him as a rude shock.
“The publication written in Hausa which has the trappings and coloration of mischief-makers was clearly fabricated with the intention of pitting the Senator against a section of the country, considering his firm position on national issues of discourse like open grazing prohibition.
“The Hausa/Fulani like any ethnic group within Nigeria are qualified as citizens to aspire to hold any elective office including the Presidency at any given time. Consequently, it is unthinkable to believe that anyone of the Senator’s standing would make such sweeping remarks. To put it plainly, only a mad man would say that Nigerians of Hausa/Fulani extraction would never rule Nigeria again in a democratic dispensation.”
It said the report was an attempt to damage Jang’s reputation, especially by linking the report to an alleged mobilisation by Christian leaders in the country towards the 2019 elections.
“Instructively, it is worthy of note to opine that the Senator is on record to have been engaged in crucial advocacy calling on all Nigerians of different tribes, religions, cultures, and traditions to register for the sole purpose of exercising their franchise. Does that sound like calling on only Christians to register?
“Ordinarily, we would not have wasted our time responding to Zuma Times, considering the very obvious fact that they did not at any point in the publication substantiate their claims. There is also no gain in suing them for libel, especially at this momentous occasion when Nigerians are living under the most crushing conditions that might have motivated the publishers to sell their conscience for a plate of porridge in the hope that their paymasters would gain an imaginary political edge against the distinguished Senator Dr Jonah David Jang.
“As it stands today, the Senator has been right about all the evils that bedevil our country whether they are mindless killings by suspected Fulani herdsmen in the Middle-Belt, biased corruption fights, or the reality of broken promises made by any means necessary for the sole purpose of confiscating power in 2015.
“Senator Jonah Jang remains a giant among his equals, a beacon of hope to his people, and a committed person to the suffering of the minorities in the north who are persecuted for their beliefs, convictions, and persuasions. He can never be deterred by a publication of no consequence sponsored by those who have been rejected by a vast majority of Nigerians.”