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Monday, 18 June 2012

TARABA GOV DANBABA SUNTAI BUYS HELICOPTER…NOW FLIES HIMSELF AROUND


If there is anything the executive governor of Taraba State, His Excellency Danbaba Suntai  can break a bank for according to sources within the government office, then it would be aircraft and flying.  Danbaba Suntai’s love for aircraft and flying we reliably squealed is so serious and this obsession, we gathered  has almost allegedly run the state aground. The governor who got into power in May 2007, within a short time, acquired two aircrafts parked in Kaduna since the airport in Jalingo, the state capital was not conducive though the sum of N9Billion was allegedly later spent on Jalingo Airport and till date the airport still can’t land the smallest airplane let alone commercial ones.  In his first term, governor Danbaba acquired another small aircraft for the State. By last year 2011 he had added a second, but none of them can still land. The latest gist however is the acquisition of a helicopter at the cost of over 1billion Naira last month, May by the Governor. According to our findings, the State held a fishing festival at Ibbi town about two months back, and during the festival, the governor hired a helicopter which took him to the fishing festival. After the festival, he pleaded with the pilot to spend more time in the state to teach him how to fly the chopper.  Before then, we learnt that, Danbaba had spent quality time despite his tight schedule as governor, attending the Aviation College in Jos, as well as another training school in America to learn how to fly. So after the fishing festival, Governor Danbaba took delivery of the helicopter. According to sources, he has built a helipad inside the Government House so that he could fly the chopper out and in by himself, without having to drive through the town of Jalingo. We gathered that ever since he took delivery of the helicopter, Danbaba has been flying it himself, at times, just for leisure and sightseeing in the state capital. To those who live around the Government House, they could only but grumble over the noise from the Governor’s take off and landing. We were told that since he brought in the helicopter, Governor Danbaba hardly travels round the State in his official cars, preferring the chopper. Meanwhile, the state is reeking in bankruptcy as the Governor has taken loans from banks to build airstrips in his village, plus the three aircraft he  bought as well as keeping the Jalingo runway functional. Based on this, once the state allocation get to the banks, the financial institutions deduct their loans before leaving whatever that remains for the government. Because of this, the day to day government business is run based on new loans from banks.

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