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Coup against Bauchi State ANPP (5)

By John Muyibi Amoda
THE President has no constitutional power to prevent the application of sections 188 and 189 by State House of Assembly, however reprehensible its motive might be.

Nevertheless there is a constitutional ground to act not in favour of Mohammed Gadi but for the dissolution of the House of Assembly and for the removal of the Governor.

This ground is Chapter Two of the 1999 Constitution.

The action of the Governor and of the 17 legislators have permanently frustrated the ANPP electorate who elected the Governor and 21 out of 31 legislators and reversed the decisions of the ANPP electorate by making a minority PDP with nine votes a 2/3 majority PDP in Bauchi (26 out of 31).

There is no way that the ANPP of April 2007 can reverse what has happened, which is in fact an anti-ANPP, PDP coup in Bauchi, except by the invocation of Sections 13 and 14 of the 1999 Constitution.  Mohammed Gadi’s heroic stand is an authentic defense of Chapter 2 of the 1999 Constitution.

His decision not to go along with the 17 and the Governor was a total and absolute sacrifice of his place with the Governor.  It was a principled decision; and though his relevance in the Bauchi State Government was negated – he nevertheless have shown that Bauchi politics is neither republican or democratically representative.

Governor Yaguda did in the open what was cloaked in secrecy in the annulment of the June 12 presidential election.  Bauchi State Government exists on the basis of the blatant annulment of the April 2007 votes of ANPP Bauchi State majority.

The Bauchi problem is a constitutional one and the Supreme Court ought to act so as to protect Chapter 2 of the Constitution upon which rests the legitimacy of governments at the three levels in Nigeria.

Mohammed Gadi is the democrat who for the sake of democracy has been willing to pay in the currency principle what his stance costs.

Conclusion: The Constitutional Options of the Bauchi State Crisis
The Bauchi events have struck at the foundations of the Constitution.  There are no remedies in the Constitution to the damage wrought by the Governor and his defecting comrades.

The national ruling party has compounded the Bauchi crises.  Femi Falana had hoped that he could appeal to Alhaji Yar’Adua as President and Head of State to uphold constitutional governance in Bauchi and to work for solutions that will keep his client from being impeached.

But the President as head of the PDP on June 27, 2009 recognised Governor Isa Yaguda as head of the PDP in Bauchi State following the dissolution of the State Executive Committee (SEC) of the PDP by the National Working Committee (NWC).

The Bauchi branch of the PDP that was a weak minority party has become through the ANPP defection the ruling party in Bauchi State and enjoys the backing of the National Working Committee of the party.

The National Chairman of the PDP, Chief Vincent Ogbulafor has established a seven-man Caretaker Committee, headed by Alhadji Bukar to administer the business of the party until a fresh election will be held for a new state Executive Committee.  The steps taken to reposition the PDP in Bauchi State have been belligerently aggressive.

No damage control measures have been adopted by the National PDP.  Far from being placatory, the Chairman of the Eminent Personalities, Alhadji Mohammed Danjuma Goje, commended the decision of Yaguda to return to the PDP.  Goje, the Governor of Gombe State stated that his committee had one goal in mind and that was to see that the entire North-East sub-region became a PDP zone.

Actions and pronouncements at both the Federal and state level are polarizing the State with PDP control of the State House now increased from nine to 27 out of a membership of 31.

The PDP State House of Assembly has the numbers to impeach the Deputy Governor.

What can stop them?  Several options are being canvassed.  Femi Falana’s appeal to the President has proven unrealistic given the dissolution of the 2007 Executive Committee of the State and the consolidation of Governor Yaguda’s control of the party in the State.

The Governor has traded one party for another; any election corrective can be contested with all the advantage of incumbency.  Governor Yaguda has become the arrowhead for the destruction of INEC’s multiparty electoral politics in Bauchi.

The ordering of a fresh election will give a second chance to take legitimately what was taken illegitimately; which as it were giving a “re-sit” exam to a student who scored A++ in the prescribed exam.  Second chance for Bauchi PDP is double jeopardy for Bauchi ANPP.

Mike Ahamba, SAN and member of ANPP argues that Governor Yaguda is no more the Governor given the Rotimi Amaechi case.

“You can’t eat your cake and have it. If you want to dump the party on which platform you were elected, it means you must have weighed the options and decided you no longer want to be a governor”.

The Amaechi case, argues Ahamba, declares that a victory won on a party’s platform is the party’s victory, not the individual’s sponsored by the party.  You can defect from the party but you cannot take the mandate of the party with you.


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