Bauchi 2019: Why MA Abubakar will emerge victorious

By Abubakar Mu’azu
It is evident that the crave to acquire power just for the sake of remaining relevant in the scheme of things is driving some political desperados in the country to ridiculous and inexplicable extent including rigging and other forms of manipulation and brigandage to win elections. The purported re-election of the Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, in February 23, 2019 National Assembly polls in Bauchi state, without a doubt, falls squarely in the category of a sham election where all decency, decorum and fair play were thrown to the winds.
Dogara’s so-called re-election on the platform of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to represent Dass/Tafawa Balewa/Bogoro Federal Constituency of Bauchi state in the House of Representatives is already mired in steep controversy, having been tarred with the brush of fraud and massive irregularities and consequently rendering the exercise a nullity, void and unacceptable. Dogara had polled 73,609 votes to defeat the APC candidate, Dalhatu Kantana, who scored 50,078 votes.
But the Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bauchi state, Alhaji Ahmed Nana, while citing widespread irregularities, called for the cancellation of the result and asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct fresh election in the constituency.
Nana, who made the party’s position known at a press conference at the party’s secretariat in Bauchi, said the election, which returned Dogara to the House of Representatives for the fourth time, was marred by irregularities.
He said, “As far as the APC is concerned, there was no election in Bogoro local government area and we will not accept the results. The elections were marred by irregularities and malpractices. Elections took place in many polling units without the use of card readers.
“APC members were brutalised, beaten to a state of coma. Some were locked up for hours, card readers were smashed and some were even set ablaze. People disguised as security agents and attacked our people.”
He added, “We call on INEC to declare the elections there as inconclusive. We call on all relevant agencies to do all things possible to address our demands because, if we are pushed to the wall, we will be left with no choice but to take the last option.”
In his reaction, the state chairman of the PDP, Hamza Akuyam, alleged that the state governor, Mohammed Abubakar, and other APC chiefs were desperate to stop Dogara’s re-election. The PDP accused the APC government of allegedly being desperate to subvert the will of the people.
 “As a lawyer and former REC, His Excellency ought to know that once a candidate has been declared a winner of an election, the only option for his opponent is to go to the election petition tribunal,” he said.
He said the statement credited to the APC was a confirmation of failed plots aimed at subverting the wishes of the Dass, Tafawa Balewa and Bogoro people whom Dogara represents.
He noted that while the party claimed, on one hand, that the election held in Dass, Tafawa Balewa and Bogoro Federal Constituency was marred by irregularities, it also alleged, on the other hand, that there was no election at all in Bogoro local government area, some parts of Wai ward, Lere North, Lere South, and Tapshin ward of Tafawa Balewa local government area.
“The obvious contradictory stand is the futile effort to fish out reasons for crying wolf,” he added.
He insisted that the election held in the three local government areas was peaceful. He alleged that APC members tried to cause confusion in some polling units so that there would be reason to declare the election as inconclusive but they did not succeed.
It is instructive that the incumbent Governor of Bauchi state, Barrister Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar, has been having a running battle with Dogara and some political jobbers of the state’s extraction, who have conspired to stop the governor’s re-election bid in this Saturday’s governorship election. The massive irregularities characterized by unbridled brigandage deployed by Dogara and his co-travellers during the presidential and national assembly elections on February 23, 2019, could therefore be seen as part of the grand plot to unseat the governor and the ruling APC in the state.
But just like all previous gang-ups against Governor Abubakar, which have failed on all fronts, this current plot shall also fail as the governor has seen through their unholy plot and is ready to take them to the cleaners this Saturday. The governor has reiterated the fact that: “In 2015, as the political soothsayers said, I came from the blues. Nobody saw me coming but Allah gave me victory as the candidate of the party, and ultimately as governor of the state. People failed to realise the kind of fight I had to put up in 2015. I had with the sitting national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in power from Bauchi state. I had the minister of the Federal Capital Territory from Bauchi state and I had the sitting governor of the PDP in Bauchi, yet I got the victory”.

If Governor Abubakar can surmount  all these obstacles in 2015 from the ‘cold’, in a manner of speaking, how much more will he achieve now with the developmental indices, statistics, massive goodwill exemplified by his adoption by 30 political parties as their governorship candidate for this Saturday’s election, and an impressive pedigree in his favour?

The governor summed up his achievements thus: “You can go to Azare; they will tell you that I am working for them. I am building roads for them. Go to Jama’are, Itas-Gadau, Giade, Toro, Dass, Ganjuwa and Bauchi, they will all tell you the same thing. In Bauchi, you will see the work I am doing. I can assure you and the people of Bauchi state that we will continue to deliver dividends of democracy”.
Is there any wonder then that Governor Abubakar is set to cruise to a landslide victory on Saturday just like he secured victory for President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term and thereby affirm his firm grip on Bauchi politics, notwithstanding the treachery and political chicanery of the Dogaras?

Mu’azu writes from Bauchi.