The forum of former vice chairmen and elected councilors in Adamawa State has announced withdrawal of support for Governor Jibrilla Bindow over non-payment of their entitlements.
They have now pitched their tent with Mahmood Ahmed, the brother in-law of President Muhammadu Buhari who is also seeking the governorship ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC), which has slated its primaries for Saturday.
The forum said although its members are grassroots politicians and had been contributing to the change agenda of the APC, they have been neglected by the Bindow administration, hence their decision to work for another APC aspirant.
Addressing journalists on Sunday, Dedan Menayi, vice chairman of the forum, said members of the forum were “constrained to withdraw their support,’’ for the governor’s inability to pay medical and health workers, as well as local government staff for over eight months.
‘’Governor Bindow had several times promised to pay furniture allowances to all former vice chairmen, secretaries, supervisory councilors, legislative councilors and advisers but he has refused to fulfill his promise.
‘’We are withdrawing our loyalty and support and calling on patriotic APC governorship aspirants, most especially Dr Mahmood Halilu Ahmed –Modi to come and rescue the state,’’ Mr Menayi said
Also speaking, a former councilor, Moses Fwa, said their salaries were reduced by half.
‘’Governor Bindow has reduced our tenure and salary to 50 per cent. Each councilor is being owed N7.8 million. We have 105 supervisory councilors, 226 legislative councilors, 21 vice chairmen in the forum.
‘’The aftermath of this have led to separation in marriages, eviction by landlords and closure of many businesses in the state; while failure of the governor to pay our salaries has also led to withdrawal of our children from school,’’ he said.
A female former councilor, Bilhatu Titus, said they were afraid to face the electorate to campaign again.
‘’The local government councils didn’t execute any project, no money and no people oriented projects by the present administration, so how do you expect us to campaign for the governor?
‘’Governor Bindow has no regard to party Exco and councilors and hence we resolved to express our grievances and we are dumping him for another candidate that can salvage the state,’’ she said.
Efforts to get the state commissioner for local government and chieftaincy affairs, Mustapha Aliyu, were not successful as his telephone lines were switched off.
The secretary to the state government, Umaru Bindir, had last week at APC Secretariat announced that the governor had settled all outstanding salary arrears including for the former councilors.