Taraba Crisis Deepens As Governor Suntai Snubs Deputy At Abuja Airport

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Governor Danbaba Suntai of Taraba State yesterday spurned his deputy and acting governor, Garba Umar at the Abuja airport on arrival of the former to Nigeria from overseas treatment.

It was reported that security men attached to Suntai debarred Umar from seeing his boss over claims that he had concluded plans to declare the governor incapacitated following the 2012 air crash that resulted in prolonged hospitalisation abroad.

It was learnt that although Umar had gone to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja around midnight on Saturday to welcome back his boss from his overseas treatment, security men attached to the governor, stopped him from seeing Suntai.

Umar reportedly left the airport in frustration after many unfruitful attempts to meet with Suntai, who was ferried into the country by a chartered private aircraft just before midnight.

On Sunday, the acting governor also made spirited efforts to meet with his boss but was also prevented from seeing him in a private guest house, where he is said to be resting.

A close aide to the governor said that Suntai was angry with Umar for attempting to declare him unfit to resume work by asking the House of Assembly to probe his state of health.

The aide said, “Umar is complaining to those who care to listen that he is being prevented from seeing his boss but what he is passing through serves him right because he no longer enjoys the confidence of Suntai. The governor is upset that Umar is goading the members of the House of Assembly to declare him unfit to work when in reality he has returned and is ready to resume work. The true position of the law is that Umar should step aside once the governor returns to the state but in this case he is trying to play games by considering setting up a medical board to examine his boss, who is already back and has recovered considerably,” the aide said.

Suntai, according to the source plans to move to Jalingo this week with a view to resuming work. He is expected to meet with President Goodluck Jonathan and some Peoples Democratic Party bigwigs before proceeding to the state capital this week.



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