Kano State Governor Umar Ganduje is set to lost out on his dream re-election as the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) are set to win the gubernatorial rerun on March 23.
Kano is one of the states Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared as inconclusive during the March 9 governorship and state assembly elections – others are Bauchi, Benue, Adamawa, Sokoto and Plateau.
The governorship candidate of the People’s Democratic Party in Kano State, Abba Kabir Yusuf is so confident of a win in the rerun and boasts:‘We call on all supporters to remain calm, we are known to be peace lovers and so we shall remain, as we are very sure of victory during the rerun.
‘Our supporters should not forget that PDP is already leading in the last count of the election and interestingly, the bye election would take place in the strongest areas of our party.’’
A scandalous video appeared online showing Governor Umar Ganduje pocketing vast wads of American dollars in what was said to be bribe payments from public works contractors.
The Kano State governor could be seen collecting the dollars before rolling them into his white dress, “babanriga,” in one of a series of questionable deals allegedly struck over a span of several months.
The two minutes video was recorded in 2017 in what Daily Nigerian described as a sting operation aimed at beaming a spotlight on the governor’s alleged penchant for contract racketeering.
Although, the governor debunked the video as “cloned” and threatened a sweeping lawsuit against its publisher. The people of Kano are set to move on from the APC candidate especially from the Tafawa Balewa Local Government Area.
But the APC are desperate to clinch victory in the gubernatorial rerun on March 23 and the President Muhammadu Buhari is driving the process himself by meeting Governors of the affected states but hasn’t met with Ganduje which may be a sign that the APC don not think they will win Kano.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on March 9 declared the governorship and State House of Assembly elections inconclusive in Plateau, Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Sokoto, Kano and Rivers states.
Some of the governors from the seven states met with the President behind closed doors, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, yesterday as they strategise on how to win the rerun.
According to report, Buhari arrived the Presidential Villa early today after spending five days in his hometown, Daura, where he participated in the governorship and state assembly elections.
And present at the meeting were Yahaya Bello of Kogi, Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State, Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi, Abdulaziz Yari, Zamfara, Abubakar Badaru, Jigawa, Kassim Shetima of Borno and Fayemi Kayode of Ekiti State.
Meanwhile, Ganduje’s commissioner, Alhaji Murtala Sule Garo, has accused a former member House of Representative, Farouk Lawan and serving member, Nasiru Sule Garo (both of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP) of destroying result sheets of Gama Ward in Nassarawa LGA.
The commissioner said: “It is not true. These PDP people and I can name some of them – Hon. Faruk Lawan and Hon Nasiru Sule Garo – went to Nassarawa Local Government Collation Centre, assaulted the INEC officer on his back and tore the entire result sheets of the Local Government. The INEC Officer has reported that which you all are aware of.”
The Kano Commissioner for Local Government further accused the state police boss of taking side with the PDP.
“This Commissioner of Police has been compromised and is selective and we are not going to take it anymore, because he has not been fair to us at all.
“We were informed by our party agents, that some PDP stalwats were tearing result sheets of the contentious Gama Ward, that is what prompted His Excellency the Deputy Governor who is from Nassarawa to and get first hand information.”
On 24 January 2018, former president Olusegun Obasanjo wrote a letter to president Buhari accusing his government of nepotism, while commending his war against corruption and lauding his achievements on Boko Haram.
Obasanjo’s letter also included an appeal to president Buhari not to contest re-election in 2019 but to instead “join the stock of Nigerian leaders whose experience, influence, wisdom, and outreach can be deployed on the sideline for the good of the country.”
Shrugging off opposition from a previous president, during a national executive council meeting on the morning of April, 9th 2018, President Buhari declared his intention to re-enter the presidential race in 2019 and seek a second term in office as a democratic leader.
This came after much speculation by political players and members of the public about whether or not he was going to run, especially considering his rather late timing.
Reactions to his announcement have been mixed, as many observers think this put a question to his integrity. Buhari said during the 2011 presidential campaigns under the CPC banner that he would never seek a re-election bid should he ever become president.
On 26 February 2019, Buhari was elected to a second term, defeating People’s Democratic Party opponent Atiku Abubakar. INEC issued the certificate of return to President Buhari and Osinbajo on February 27, 2019.