By Najib Sani
Ahead of the forthcoming governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states, the All Progressives Congress (APC) governors under the aegis of the Progressives Governors’ Forum (PGF) yesterday met in Bauchi state to strategise on how to capture the two states.
The meeting which held at the Yankari Games Reserve was attended by nine APC governors of Bauchi, Edo, Imo, Plateau, Kaduna, Sokoto, Zamfara, Kwara and Kebbi. While those of Adamawa, Kano, Jigawa, Borno, Katsina, Ogun, Benue and Benue were represented by their deputies.
Briefing newsmen shortly after the meeting, the Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Imo state, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, said the party was optimistic of capturing the two states of Bayelsa and Kogi in view of the calibre of candidates it had in Timipre Sylva and Prince Abubakar Audu.
He also applauded the judiciary for doing justice to nullify the governorship elections of Rivers and Akwa Ibom states which was rigged by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), saying that the APC was poised to triumph in the re-run elections.
In his welcome address, the Bauchi state governor, and chief host, Mohammed Abubakar, said the nation’s economy might grow worse and, therefore, called on the Governors of the Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), to be wary of the circumstances in order not to be caught napping.
Abubakar said the allocation from the federation account for September was indicative that “the days and months to come will be tough” and, therefore, called on the governors to increase the Internally Generated Revenues (IGRs) of their states to complement the situation.
He said: “I will like to enjoin my colleagues to be wary of the development in the economy of the nation. We should not be caught napping. I think and I believe that things will get worse in the country before they get better.
“I am certain that quite a number of us have spoken with our Commissioner s of Finance and our Accountants-General, who went for the Federal Allocation Committee (FAC) meeting in Abuja. By now, I know we have no doubts in our hearts of what they are bringing home as revenue from the Federal Account.
“The solution to this, in my mind, is for us to look inwards by improving our Internally Generated Revenues (IGR). Quite a number of us have started, but I will call on those who have not started doing so to start.”
Abubakar also said the APC governors were hopeful that Rivers and Akwa Ibom states “will soon be APC states.”