My last week’s opinion on why Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi state fits the presidential cap was greeted with barrage of questions, diverse perceptions and, on the other hand, fully loaded criticisms. In a 15-paragraph piece, I opined that Nigeria at this critical time needs only a detribalised leader to stabilise it and Bala Mohammed is one, having all is takes to rule the country.
I made reference to the emergence former President Goodluck Jonathan in 2010, when Senator Bala eschewed regional, religious and political party sentiments and moved the “Doctrine of Necessity” motion on the floor of the Senate, which paved way for the then Vice-President Goodluck Jonathan to emerge acting president.
However, some people are of the view that it’s too early for the governor to contest for president in 2023 but, should rather stay home and complete his transformation agenda in the state. Among the questions some people ask is, does he have the wherewithal to clinch the ticket, looking at the formidable and awe-inspiring candidates in-waiting, who have been desperate for long? They are referring to the likes of Atikulated who is ever ready to “dollarise” the race. This question interests me the most!
Let’s take a memory tour into his political annals. Bala Mohammed is the luckiest politician I know who has never lost election. In 2007 when he first contested for the senatorial seat, the then ordinary Bala Abdukadir, a retired civil servant from a humble background, defeated a powerfully seating governor by a landslide. Perhaps the only weapon that put Senator Bala on positive side was the “Kamashi Kaura slogan”. His stay in the Senate was short-lived when he was made minister, perhaps he would have become senate president.
Just in 2007, in 2019, despite the persecutions, prosecutions and being surrounded by political gladiators, Bala Mohammed defied all odds to take the incumbent governor Abdullahi Abubakar off the seat, in his first tenure. This is unprecedented in the history of Bauchi state. Until it became obvious, if you told anyone that Kaura could defeat MA, he would scoff at you.
Politics is a game of number; if one is accepted by his people the way to promised land is assured. Governor Bala has a sense of humour and he has since established a strong bond of friendship at home and away. This makes him to be like a magnet, attracting support from all regions and across the political spectrum in the country. In the same vien, the level of endorsements from various pressure groups governor Bala Mohammed enjoys these days is posing great threat to other presidential aspirants in the country. The support has continued to increase by the day, so much so that, some groups threatened to sue the governor if he rejects their call for him to join the 2023 presidential race.
Forget about Bauchi state and the North East as a whole, even governor Zulum of Borno, who is another beacon of hope, has signaled his endorsement for Bala Mohammed and so, we collectively endorse him (Bala).
With the support from the four walls of the country, any unbiased Nigerian must humbly submit Bala Mohammed has the wherewithal to emerge president. Above all, he is more qualified than all other presidential hopeful as he had experience in the legislature, federal executive council and state government.
2023 will surely be eventful!
Faculty of Communication,
Bayero University, Kano