Plateau chieftaincy tussle deepens as kingmakers affirm selection of Bashar monarch

From Jude Owuamanam, Jos

The crisis rocking the chieftaincy stool of Bashar chiefdom in the Wase local government area of Plateau State has taken a new turn as stakeholders and kingmakers of the chiefdom have affirmed the selection of Alhaji Abdullahi Idris as the Rekna of Bashar

A group, under the aegis of Concerned Stakeholders of Bashar Chiefdom, had on Monday controverted the selection process, which threw up Idris as the monarch of Bashar chiefdom.

They had claimed that not only was the appointment flawed, it didn’t follow the Plateau State chieftaincy laws.

Shehu Mujahid Abubakar, who led the group had said the former government ignored the people’s protestation on the choice of the new monarch, to the committee on Complaints Arising from the Creation/Upgrade of Chiefdoms, Districts, and Village Areas in Plateau State, which they alleged was manipulated by the former chairman of the local government.

However another group made up of stakeholders and kingmakers of the chiefdom at a press briefing at NUJ Press Centre on Wednesday, said that not only is Idris a bonafide member of the Argando Ruling House, but was validly selected by the kingmakers and widely acknowledged by the entire people of Bashar chiefdom.

They said that the Abubakar group failed to demonstrate in what capacity they claim to be stakeholders of the stool of the Rekna of Bashar, as in matters relating to chieftaincy stools, only members of the royal family (particularly those who were contestants or candidates at an election) and the kingmakers can claim to be stakeholders.

Dr Zakari Mohammed, Dallatun Bashar and Chairman Bashar Community Development Association (BACODA), who spoke on behalf of the stakeholders and Bashar chiefdom kingmakers, said that since the selection of Idris, there had been no single objections to his installation nor had any of those who claimed to be concerned stakeholders raised any objection or challenged the selection process in any court of law.

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He said, “You recall that following the death of Alhaji Adamu Idris, the late Rekna of Bashar on the 24 days of September 2022, a new Rekna of Bashar in the person of Alhaji Abdullahi Idris was selected by the kingmakers following due compliance with the necessary provisions of the law that regulates the selection of the Rekna of Bashar.

“Upon the completion of the selection exercise, Rt Hon Barrister Simon Bako Lalong, the former Governor of Plateau State appointed Alhaji Abdullahi Idris, as the Rekna Bashar.

“It is necessary to put on record that sequel to the said election and appointment, Alhaji Abdullahi Idris was duly conferred with the Staff of Office as the Rekna of Bashar Chiefdom on the 5th
January, 2023.

“It is interesting to note that, there has been no challenge to the selection or appointment of HRH Alhaji Abdullahi Idris, as the Rekna of Bashar.

“There is presently no pending suit filed by any aggrieved person(s) not even Shehu Mujahid Abubakar, who addressed the press on the 8th Day of July 2024, on the said subject matter. The Rekna of Bashar has received wide acceptability since
his ascension to the stool of his forebears, without any rancour by the Ruling Houses, kingmakers or the community in general.”

They affirmed that the selection of HRH Alhaji Abdullahi Idris, as the Rekna of Bashar, is in tandem with the customs of the Bashar people, stressing that HRH AIhaji Abdullahi Idris is undoubtedly a member of the Ruling House of Bashar, and his selection was through a proper selection process by the kingmakers.

The group debunked the allegation that the selection process was manipulated while four out of the five kingmakers were abducted and made to do the bidding of the former local government chairman.

One of the kingmakers, Alhaji Abdullahi Yusuf, who was allegedly abducted denied the allegations.

He said that the allegation that he was abducted was borne out of the imagination of the self-styled concerned stakeholders, adding that the fact that all the five kingmakers were present at the press briefing and appended their signatures to the text of the briefing was a testament to the fact that there was no controversy over the selection and appointed of Alhaji Abdullahi Idris as the Rekna of Bashar.

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