BY CHAMBERLAIN ODEY, JOS – Former Plateau State Governor and now Senator, Dr Jonah David Jang has accused Governor Simon Lalong of high-handedness over his refusal to pay constituency projects’ allowances to the State legislators in the last two years.
“It is a shame, very big shame, that as a former lawmaker, and a former Speaker of the House for that matter, Lalong has refused to pay constituency projects allowances to the State legislators”, Jang said.
According to Jang, the Governor “should understand the importance of this constituency commitment given his background as a legislator. Before, as governor, I used to be reluctant to pay, but I will eventually pay the allowances to the legislators. Now as a legislator myself, I know better. Lalong should pay these allowances to the legislators to enable them make some practical impact on their constituencies”.
Jang, who made the remarks during a constituency town hall meeting in Jos North Local Government Area, also urged the people of the area to engage their representative in the House of Representatives on his stewardship, irrespective of his political party.
He noted that constituency projects are usually captured in the annual fiscal appropriation and every legislator should be ready and disposed to rendering the right account to the electorate.
The former Governor said it is a beacon of his service and representation of the people to properly account for every kobo given to him for constituency projects.
The event, which saw the Senator distributing cargo cycles and tricycles to some of his constituents, also provided an opportunity for the people ventilate their pressing issues, ranging from employment to a functional constituency office that would enable them access the Senator promptly and easily.
Senator Jang also used the occasion to harp on the need for the people of the constituency and indeed the entire members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State to embrace the on-going voters’ registration exercise and ensure that all those eligible to vote participate in the great decision making that the next general elections will offer.
As part of PDP’s readiness and preparations for the 2019 elections, Jang called for unity, cohesion, forgiveness, and genuine reconciliation within the party, adding that these present the basic values required to reinstate the party in power come 2019.
He said all groups, ethnic or religious, operating in Plateau must accept to live and work towards developing the state to the point where everyone can realise his or her aspirations without hindrance.
Jang, who expressed support for the PDP’s zoning principle, urged the Party and the zones where certain elective offices are allocated to bring out their best candidates with good reputation and acceptability that will endear them to the electorate.
According to him, this is imperative so that the PDP candidates can beat their opponents, including incumbents in the forthcoming elections.
The Senator used the three-day programme to visit areas in the Plateau North Senatorial zone, where he commissioned projects under his constituency development scheme, including schools and community markets across the six local government areas in the zone.