On May 29, 2015, vacancies will exist in most Government Houses in the country. The subtle campaign for the Bauchi State gubernatorial election has commenced with both contestants and jokers drumming support for themselves.
Governor Isa Yuguda looks determined to install a successor which will amount to continuation of his administration beyond 2015. He is said to have anointed either the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Barrister Ibrahim Salau Ahmed Dandija and the former National Secretary of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Musa Babayo to succeed him. However, some politicians in the state are equally mapping out strategies with the view of bringing out a credible candidate that will defeat Yuguda’s candidates.
Yuguda, in the course of his seven years old administration has stepped on so many toes thereby attracting enemies to himself. They have perfected plans on how to ruin Yuguda politically, just as they ruined the political career of his predecessors, Alhaji Ahmed Ma’azu.
Yuguda’s predecessor, Alhaji Ma’azu committed political suicide when in 2003; he imposed his Secretary to the state government, Alhaji Umar Nadada as the PDP candidate. The electorates in protested and voted for the rival All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP). Yuguda, the ANPP candidate won the election because of protest votes.
Apparently, Yuguda who was the major beneficiary of the electorates’ protest votes is about to commit the same political mistake of his predecessor. As the popular adage goes, “in politics there is no permanent friend or enemy but interest”. Governor Yuguda and his former personal assistant who is now the minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Senator Mohammed is hoping to cash in on the political mistakes of his former boss. His ambition is to becaome the next governor of Bauchi State.
Another aspirant who is equally pulling huge crowd is Senator Abdull Ninig, who is the senate deputy majority leader. He is at hand to cash in on the political mistakes of the governor. The above political situation has thrown the state into political crisis of succession that is serious brewing in Bauchi. The question on the lips of many is: who will succeed Governor
Yuguda in the forthcoming gubernatorial election? The contest has been reduced to a contest between the anointed candidate of Yuguda and those who don’t want the continuation of the Yuguda’s administration. The later have mapped out strategies to oust Yuguda by installing a mature and acceptable candidate against the Yuguda’s anointed candidates.
Undoubtedly, the decision of Governor Yuguda to install either his SSG, Alhaji Dandija or his brother in- law, Dr. Musa Babayo to succeed him may not be unconnected with the fear of being probed after his tenure in office as governor. It is believed in political circles that governors serving their second term and not eligible to contest in 2015 are desperate to install
their stooges as their successors. This is to ensure that their successors give them adequate cover when they leave office. The opposition party in the state had in the recent past accused Governor Yuguda administration of fraud. In politics of today, the trend is that whoever emerges governor will make it his priority to run down his predecessor in order to
present themselves as saints before the electorate. The usually set up commissions of enquiry and the result of such commissions are known in advance. When Yuguda emerged as governor, he set up a commission of inquiry that indicted former governor Ma’azu’s administration. But after reconciling their differences, the court was cajoled into setting aside the said indictment of Ma’azu.
Indeed, Bauchi state is a unique state when it comes to elections. The electorate are known for protest voting patterns, especially against the ruling party. For instance, former governor Ma’azu transformed the state both in terms of infrastructures, human empowerment among other things when he was governor. Yet, the electorates voted him and his candidate out. The struggle for the commencement of election has not officially commenced. But certain events and moves have suggested names of certain prominent sons of the state as having interest in replacing Yuguda. They paint the picture of themselves as better alternatives to Yuguda. Going by index available, Senator of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), top the list of the aspirants whose empowerment activities targeted at youths and women in the state has earned them acceptability by all and sundry.
Senator Abdull Ninig , the deputy senate majority leader is a very out spoken lawmaker whose vibrancy on the floor of both Federal House of Representatives and the Senate since he returned to democratic system of government in 1999, has an edge over others.
Ninigi is said to have been holding series meetings with some stakeholders in the state, intimating them of his ambition to occupy the number one seat in the state. Already, Ningi is alleged to have set up a campaign organization to coordinate and start collecting people’s views and opinion regarding his governorship ambition.
He has represented his constituents credibly well in the National Assembly and as such, he cannot be associated with the association of seat wormers in the senate who used the position to attract projects, ranging from water project, schools, roads and other things.
If zoning is to be respected, the governorship of the state should shift to either northern Bauchi or Bauchi central. this is because the Southern Zone of the state have held sway since the returned of the nation to democratic system of governance, starting with Muazu, who governed the state from 1999 to 2007 and then Yugugda took over from him, in 2007 and he is expected to reign until 2015. Both of them are from the southern zone of the state and as such, many are of the view that it fair thing to do is to allow either Bauchi central or northern senatorial zones the chance to govern the state in 2015.
Indeed, the zoning arrangement favoured Senator Ningi and Dandija who hails from the Central Zone. Others are Dr. Babayo , former Minister of Police Affairs, Dr Ibrahim Yakubu Lame, Senator Ali Wakili, Senator Abubakar Maikafi, Architect Mohammed Dewu, Alhaji Shehu Muaa Gabam former Chief of Staff to Yuguda, Alhaji Sarki Abdullahi and
Adamu Dan China.
Secretary to the Bauchi state Government, Barrister Ahmed Dandija is rumored to be the anointed candidate of Governor Yuguda with whom the Governor is well pleased. He is bent on imposing him as the PDP candidate in the forthcoming gubernatorial election. The SSG is the strong man of the Yuguda’s administration and the success or otherwise of Yuguda’s
administration largely depend on him. He is expected to enjoy the goodwill of Yuguda, but unfortunately, the people of the state have extended their hatred of Yuguda to the politician. The opposition parties in the state, especially the ANPP that recently collapsed into APC detest Yuguda for allegedly betraying them when they gave him the platform after being chased out of PDP.
He dumped the ANPP for PDP and those that Yuguda stepped on their toes have extended the hatred to the SSG whom Yuguda has anointed to succeed him.
The SSG has kick-start his campaign during this year’s Sallah celebration when he seized the opportunity to host PDP followers in the state. One of the speakers at the forum described him as the hire apparent to Yuguda and the next occupier of the number one seat in the state.