By Dr. Umar Ardo
I just read a Press Release said to have emanated from Mr. Solomon Kumanga, the Spokesman of the Adamawa State Governor, denying the infamous telephone altercation now gone viral allegedly between Governor Fintiri and Hussaini Gambo, claiming that it was technically doctored by the governor’s opponents.
To me, the governor’s denial seems lame, watery and falsely unconvincing, aimed to hoodwink, deceive and beguile the gullible as the voices I heard in that audioclip sound unmistakably Fintiri’s and Husseini’s! Not even mimicking genius of Damboa would mimic them this perfect! The denial therefore creates an entirely new moral issue to the dimension – the issue of character! As the governor holding not just the lives of Adamawa people but whose policies would be determining their present and future, it is supremely important that the people trust him. While good policies are mainly a function of a leader’s temperament, trust is earned through character. This therefore goes to emphasize the significance of temperament and character of the individual in leadership.
Thank God the truth of the matter can be sufficiently established by technology and put things to rest. We know the offensive audioclip came on line yesterday, and those who follow matters closely in the state know there was sufficient motive for the alleged altercation. But just as Kumanga claimed “… anything is possible in this digital age”, it is even easier to use technology to verify whether or not this telephone call did truly take place. The technology doesn’t lie. We can simply make way for the verification through call records of the service companies – a check-run on callers of Husseini’s phone lines or vice versa will tell the truth. But let’s for now leave technical issues to the technicians.
On my part, in the interest of public truth for the advancement of Adamawa state, if the governor and Husseini will submit to this test, l volunteer to foot the cost bill of the entire procedure.
If it is found untrue, Gov. Fintiri is out of the woods; but if it turns out that this telephone altercation did indeed take place, then it will be clear that in addition to being governed by a highly temperamental and threatening person, Adamawa people are also being lied to by one who ought to tell them the absolute truth on all things.
Besides, it’s also not just a one way affair; Husseni was also alleged to be at the other end of the line. Was his voice also doctored? In any case, the world will be eager to hear what Husseini on his part will have to say on this. He started it and he ought to finish it.
Secondly, immediately after the despicable looting sprees in Adamawa in the wake of the #ENDSARS Protests a few days ago, Gov. Ahmad Fintiri addressed the press and emphatically stated that Adamawa State did not receive any palliatives whatsoever from the federal government to cushion the COVID-19 lockdown for the people of the state. Hours later, we saw a videoclip of the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs on behalf of President Mohammed Buhari handing over to Gov. Fintiri, “ably represented” by his SSG and COS, 100 trucks of grains of millets, sorghum and maize. To all intents and purposes, this videoclip (if not also doctored) definitely has established a clear lie on the governor. This is a further serious and demeaning indictment which urgently demands a convincing explanation from the governor if Adamawa people are not to continue believing what they saw. Is that videoclip of the Minister, SSG and COS also a fabrication of technology? Urgent answers are needed. The atmosphere is stuffy of uncertainties; it desperately needs a breathe of truth air to clear the fog.
Dr. Umar Ardo, Ph.D, is an Adamawa based politician