The peoples of Bauchi State in Northern Nigeria, do not seem to be interested in having their Governor, Mohammed Abubakar, beyond this coming May 29 in office. They are eager to see his back soon.
For some concerned prominent sons of the state, among them, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, running to President Muhammadu Buhari, to allegedly seek the president’s support to retain power in the state will not help the embattled governor.
Governor Abubakar was at the Presidential Villa on Monday to brief President Buhari ahead of this Saturday’s governorship supplementary election in the state.
Bauchi is among the six states where the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared the governorship election inconclusive, and scheduled a rerun for March 23, 2019.
After meeting with Buhari, the governor claimed that he told Buhari that the electoral umpire introduced procedure not known to the laws of the land during the March 9 elections in the state.
Critics say they expected the governor to tell President Buhari that he was not popular with the peoples of his state. Before now, suspected political thugs had attacked his convoy after leaving Eid prayer ground along Bakaro road which was said to be a notorious haven for political thugs.
The attack caused chaos as the thugs damaged the vehicle conveying the government house press centre as the driver tried to escape while other vehicles diverted direction, for safety. The thugs allegedly laid ambush at the main roads where the governor was expected to pass, chanting slogans such as Bamayi, which according to the local people means, ‘’we are not with you, we don’t want you as governor.’’
An eye-witness claimed that during the attack, several youths and women were seen openly castigating the governor for allegedly failing to address the plight of the people of the state, and that it took the intervention of respected individuals to calm the angry youths, though there were no arrests by Police yet.
Some residents of the state are currently not willing to support the governor for a second term following his alleged failure to address the challenges of the state.
Apparently not rattled, Governor Abubakar said, ‘’I briefed him (Buhari) on the issues surrounding the inconclusive elections, the Returning Officer for Bauchi State at the end of collation, rejected the result of Tafawa Balewa Local Government and then 36 other units spread around 15 local governments of Bauchi State and ordered a rerun.
‘’Surprisingly, we woke up one morning and the independent electoral commission came up with a procedure that is not known to law.
‘’Because, where a Returning Officer has declared the result, only an election petition tribunal can reverse the result. But INEC is attempting to reverse itself in the case of Bauchi. And when one juxtaposes that of Bauchi and other states with inconclusive elections, one wonders why that is happening only in Bauchi.
‘’So, for that reason there is a need for me to come and brief Mr. President because that has the potential of touching on the security of the state. Of course, it is definitely extra illegal. It is a straightforward matter. The returning officer is the final arbiter even with respect to scores and declaration of result.
‘’And once he makes a declaration, no power can reverse that declaration except duly constituted court of the land. I am not seeking any action of Mr. President. We all know Mr. President, he is a stickler for procedure. What I pointedly told him was that I am not here to seek for you to interfere on our behalf sir but to brief you on what is happening and what actions I have taken.
‘’I am a lawyer and I am pursuing the legal angle. I briefed him and he emphasised on that legal angle that it is the best way to go. We are on top of the situation, thank God. We have since ordered the van on procession in the metropolis and things are very very calm.
‘’There are procedures in this matters and levels of authority. I am a stickler for procedure, I started at the right place and I have also ended up at the right place. If they are going to do it now, we are ready. I don’t know who is afraid of anyone in Tafawa Balewa.’’