As the battle for Kano Government House reached an advanced stage with respective flagbearers threatening fire and brimstone, our Kano correspondent, BASHIR MOHAMMED takes a look at the unfolding political drama and the uncertainty of the would be outcome
Uncertainty of Kano race
The unpredictable nature of Kano politics has appeared to have kept everyone in a perpetual guess, not knowing precisely where the political pendulum will swing and in whose favour, as far as winning the gubernatorial race in Kano state is concerned.
At the height of the hustle and bustle of the governorship electioneering, leading flagbearers in the state were seen running pillar to post, seeking to be accepted by the electorate, knowing that without earning their unfettered confidence, they would end up fighting a fruitless war.
Kano, as it is widely known, is a political melting pot where it has become absolutely difficult for even the most ingenious pundits to predict the tide of political events and how they are expected to unfold and what would exactly happen in the aftermath.
With the governorship election about to be conducted in just a matter of hours, Kano, like every state in the country, is witnessing a new dawn where every gubernatorial flagbearer is becoming extremely desperate to clinch one of the most adored and highly revered hot seat in the present political set up.
Having the highest number of Local Government Areas in the country in addition to having five most exalted emirate councils, the race to Kano Government House had over the years been attracting attention thus many people are keeping constant tab on the state with a view to knowing the unfolding political drama at every stage.
Parties and their respective flagbearers jostling for power have entered the fray with great passion to prove their worth, taking into cognizance that the ball is in the court of the electorate, as they are the ones to determine who to be elected to lead them in the years ahead.
The unique nature of Kano politics is the fact that it is not the sheer quantum of service delivery that one does to earn the electorate absolute confidence, it all depends on one’s populist appeal and the way people in the state, by act of providence, one is revered to high heavens in the most competitive political marathon.
Contestants at a glance
First, to begin with the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), the party and its serving governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, came on board with a midas touch, believed to have been accentuated by the popularity of President Muhammadu Buhari who from all intents and purposes employed his influence in adding tonic to the ambition of anyone seeking an exalted office on the platform of the APC.
He had the opportunity to have successfully remained in the saddle for about eight good years even in the face of the awesome might of the New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP) whose meteoric rise to stardom took everyone by surprise even though people believed that it was the populist appeal commanded by Dr. Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso that gave the party a human face at its embryonic stage.
However, the inconclusive saga which swayed the attention of everyone at the peak of the announcement of the year 1999 Kano governorship election result has appeared to have changed the political calculus of those who were confident then that the NNPP’s gubernatorial flagbearer bearer, Abba Kabir Yusuf, was on the road to winning the race.
With Ganduje calling the shots in the last eight years and his sojourn in the seat of power as a governor about to be ended by the provision of the constitution, his loyal deputy, Alhaji Nasir Yusuf Gawuna, took the gauntlet for the struggle to remain in progress, after winning the party’s primary.
Contenders like Alhaji Shaaban Sharada Action Democratic Party (ADP) has also joined the fray to drive his worth as a political wunderkind, who rose to prominence in a jiffy considering the high degree of influence he is wielding at the time the youth are yearning for a change of guard as he always posits during various campaign rallies he staged.
It was, however, his contention that the right time for a change of guard has come and this is the right time for the new blood to wrest power from those he described as old guards and spent horses who he affirmed have outlived their usefulness.
Following his footsteps, is Alhaji Salihu Tanko Yakassai of the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP), a son of one of the most revered politician and statesman who wielded their influence during the hey days of the defunct third republic, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai, seeking to be elected as governor of Kano state with the clamour for youth inclusion in governance reaching a fever pitch.
Saddiq Wali, a son of Alhaji Aminu Bashir Wali, has also joined the governorship race, after battling with excruciating court cases which ended in his favour in the nation’s apex court, after been declared by the Supreme Court as a substantive gubernatorial flagbearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kano state.
But what is attracting the attention of political observers and pundits in Kano State, is how the forthcoming battle would be won by two parties desperate to cling onto power in what appeared to be a do or die scenario.
APC, NNPP desperation
Both the APC and the NNPP have been trading polemics and and accusations between themselves over the alleged grand plots and orchestration of conspiracy theories to rig the governorship election by hook or crook.
Such accusations and counter accusations have led to a change of guard at the highest echelon of security in the state, a result of which the Commissioners of Police were swapped supposedly to dispel the accusation and counter accusation that there is the possibility of foul play on the part of the security agencies, most especially, the police.
It was undoubtedly evident that in the last presidential and National Assembly elections in Kano what was projected to happen by those who made such accusations and counter accusations has not happened as has been the case across the country.
What is, however, becoming a jigsaw puzzle to those making series of predictions and prognoses on who would emerge winner in the race for Kano Government House, considering the fact that every leading contender is spitting fire, even in the face of the fact that the governorship race in Kano has appeared to be a dead heat battle.