Adamawa politics and December 16

Yakubu Uba

Almost everybody knows December 25 of every year is Christmas day, in Adamawa, this coming December 16 is going to be “the Christmas before the Christmas” simply because it is that date that the  Supreme Court fixed for a judgement that’s a source of concern to most politicians that matter in the state politics.
The judgement has to do with the case filed by former Governor of Adamawa, Murtala Nyako, whose impeachment in 2014 was declared null and void by the Yola Division of the Court of Appeal. The brewing tension in Adamawa now is that Nyako’s supporters and others who felt betrayed by the present APC government under Muhammadu Jibrilla Bindow are optimistic that Nyako will be returned or a fresh election ordered in Adamawa just as Bindow’s supporters are also optimistic that that day will bury  for good the hope of Nyako’s supporters. Both groups are set for the Christmas before the Christmas celebration which only God knows which one among them will finally role out the drums.

Come what may, the groups and other stakeholders have started preparation for the moment and by extension 2019 if December 16 fails to click.
We now have “Team Bindow” mobilizing for the governor, and “Team Nyako/Team Abdul-Azeez” mobilizing for the return of Nyako or Abdul-Azeez Nyako in 2019. Other formidable teams hoping to  spring surprises in this era of global election shocks include  “Team Ribadu” for Nuhu Ribadu and “The Pen” which has Buba Marwa supporters and other members of  Legacy parties (APC, ACN, CPC) who felt Gov. Bindow who came from defunct New PDP is not carrying them along in his administration.
Members of Team Bindow are now engaged in a massive membership drive sharing forms to the electorate to join their mass movement in supporting the governor who has embarked on massive infrastructural development, particularly roads in the three senatorial zones of the state.

Bindow has repeatedly said that his traducers were after him for refusing to share Adamawa money to them. He labelled them “Abuja politicians” who must be fought if Adamawa is to be salvaged. He categorically told his antagonists that, if they consider him a monkey, he considers them bunch of banana.
On the other hand, members of Team Nyako/Team Abdulazeez, who are considered as Bindow’s major headache feel if Bindow could betray them so soon in spite of their role in his emergence, then he deserves to be taught a lesson.
Senator Abdulazeez Nyako, the brain box of the group, had said that the Nyakos were not after Bindow but in court to seek redress and have no regret if anyone is jittery about it.
The senator, popularly referred to as “Commander,” explained that their victory at the Court of Appeal which voided Nyako’s impeachment prompted them to follow the matter to the Supreme Court in their bid to deter future recurrence of such action in Adamawa or any state.

For Team Ribadu, who had already appointed their chairmen in all the 21 Local Governments of Adamawa for mobilization, many felt their grouse with Bindow administration has to do with the perceived opposition to the return of Nuhu Ribadu to APC as exhibited by the Chief of Staff to Bindow.
The chief of staff, Abdulrahman Abba, was said to have mocked Ribadu and other returnees when he (Abba) announced at a function that the state government would not organize any reception for them as requested by Abuja. Abba said elections had been won without the returnees, and that the best thing for the returnees to do is to go silently to their wards and register.
Ribadu, who recently visited the state party secretariat to formally announce his return to APC, said he was happy to be back and would contribute his quota to building the party at all levels. Members of Bindow’s group were conspicuously absent at the party reception for Ribadu and Chief Marcus , the runner up to Bindow in 2015 election.

Members of the Pen Group who are mostly defunct CPC members, had in their recent meeting attended by Buba Marwa, the gubernatorial candidate of the party in 2011, raised concern over their perceived marginalization under the Bindow administration. They claimed that as members of legacy parties that formed APC and worked for Bindow’s victory, the only thing they have to show for their compensation is just one appointment as special assistant in Bindow administration.
According to them, henceforth, anybody that needed their political support has some conditions to fulfill. The group seems to be telling Bindow that he needs to treat all part of his towel nicely because the part that wipes his buttocks today may wipe his face tomorrow.
Marwa, at the occasion, tasked them to ensure active participation in party congress as the only way to ensure that they have their choice candidates in power. Marwa narrated how he was frustrated out of APC with his supporters who were refused membership registration, adding such shall not be allowed to happen again.
One certain thing is that Bindow won last Adamawa governorship election with a landslide victory that was never seen since the creation of Adamawa state. His votes were more than those of his 11 opponents combined and for the first time all candidates bear the outcome without going to court.
Bindow seems to have hit the ground running in delivering dividends of democracy to the electorate, but some of those formidable groups that worked for him are now again him raising fears that if there will be an election tomorrow he may not survive it.

Bindow’s supporters however said his support base is the people and not group; they insisted that the groups were made of people whose majority is now with Bindow because of his transformation programmes. According to Team Bindow, the governor has put Adamawa first and is doing good, and good will always come his way whatsoever the outcome of December 16.
The clock is ticking; come what may on December 16, will assume a new phase that only time will tell who will really shape the new phase of between Bindow and his opponents, who despite their differences seem to be united against him.
Adamawa is pregnant, let’s see what shall be delivered. How deep is the mud? It depends on who you ask.

Uba wrote from Yolde Pate Ward, Yola South LGA, Adamawa State.

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