A former deputy governor of Plateau State, Mrs Pauline Tallen, has said that she turned down her ambassadorial nomination in order to be fair to other parts of the state in terms of federal appointments.
Tallen, a former Minister of Science and Technology and Labour Party governorship candidate in Plateau State in 2011, made this known in Abuja on Monday.
“I hail from the same local government and tribe with Governor Simon Lalong. I turned down the nomination because of balancing of appointments, I don’t think it is right for me to accept the appointment.
“Secondly, proper consultation was not done, my governor was not consulted because I called him when he was in United States of America to ask but he said that he was not aware.
“For me, I was consulted and I turned down the appointment even before the announcement was made,” adding that “my husband’s ill-health is another reason why I will not accept the appointment.
Tallen said that Mr President gave her another option and also assured her that Plateau would not miss its two slots.
The former deputy governor, who appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for the honour, said that her name was not included on the list of nominees and was surprised when the announcement was made.
She further said that her decline would not affect Plateau chances for the two slots as another name had already been submitted in her stead.
Meanwhile, Lalong has described Tallen’s decline as an exhibition of political maturity.
“Plateau is always on the front-burner when it comes to politics, that shows her maturity not just in Plateau but as a national figure.
“Once things are not done properly, it is better for a leader and a mother to come out and say that things are not done properly in the interest of the state.
“When I heard the announcement, I was very shocked because what happened was without proper consultation,” he said while interacting with newsmen in Abuja.
The governor said that his administration was working toward addressing the issue of balancing appointments, and pointed out that he had already discussed the issue with Buhari in their last meeting.
Lalong said that the opposition was already saying that the appointments were lopsided, but stressed that his administration was a government of change and they would only do what would favour all sections of the North-Central state.
He appreciated Tallen for her decision, and assured the people that their quota would be filled and he would go further to ensure that distinguished sons and daughters of Plateau get more appointments.