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Governorship election: Adamawa incumbent gets right of first refusal

By Henry Umoru

ABUJA — STRONG indications have emerged, yesterday, that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP cleared the governor of Adamawa State, Bala James Ngilari to contest the 2015 governorship election, following the intervention of Chairman, Board of Trustees, BoT of the party, Chief Tony Anenih, who insisted that he should be given right of first refusal like other serving governors.

It was also gathered that following strong “protests by some traditional rulers, PDP Governors’ Forum, Gen T.Y. Danjuma, PDP jettisoned its earlier endorsed zoning arrangement where the 2015 slot was zoned to Adamawa Central and granted the governor, “Right of First Refusal” that was also accorded governors of Bayelsa, Kaduna, and Gombe.

With yesterday’s develelopent, Bala James Ngilari of Adamawa State who was cleared by former Governor Achike Udenwa led Screening Committee for North East, said that the clearance granted him to contest the 2015 was a sign of confidence in his capacity to lead the party to victory in the 2015 general elections, even as he described it as victory for democracy.

Ngilari, who stated this while reacting to the latest position of the national leadership of the party on Adamawa State chapter of the party, said the development would further assist him to deliver the dividends of democracy to “the long suffering people of the state.”

Speaking with Journalists, the governor who noted that PDP would go into the primaries united and come out stronger as opposed to the earlier position of those who wish the party “ill luck”, said, “If the party had stopped me, there would have been a backlash that would have affected the fortunes of the party in the 2015 general elections. And that was what has been averted by the party by its matured handling of the issue.”

There were doubts over the screening of Ngilari by the party following the controversial zoning of the governorship position to the Central Senatorial District of the state as it was followed by the sudden sack of the State Executive Committee of the party. The move was believed to be targeted at Governor Ngilari.

Ngilari said the party’s decision is a vindication of his position that a governor must govern with the fear of God and be just to all, stressing that the overwhelming support he has received from people of all walks of life, faith has further confirmed to him that he must continue to govern with fear of a God.

He said, “Many Muslims from within and outside the state and Christians took up my matter because they saw an injustice about being meted out to me. The only way I can repay everyone is to be fair, and ensure justice to all.”

On his plans for the state if elected, he said his programme of “Restorative” will cover all areas – that would include education, health, infrastructure and security, adding that his administration shall give legal backing to the activities of the vigilantes, adding, “A bill would soon be forwarded to the State House of Assembly. The bill is in the draft stage and it is an issue that is dear to me. So, in the next few days, it will be ready for the consideration of the House. The state working with the military, would soon chase out the insurgents.

“The state and the military working together, have made substantial gains. I appeal to members of the National Assembly to approve the state of emergency extension as requested by President Goodluck Jonathan.”


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