By Levinus Nwabughiogu
As Nigerians head back to the polls today to elect fresh governors and state legislators, there is no doubt that it would also be another titanic battle between two major political parties.
Though there are over 10 political parties participating in the exercise, electoral dynamics have obviously narrowed down the contest between All Progressives Congress, APC and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Like in the March 28 Presidential elections, both parties displayed strength but at the end of the day, PDP’s candidate and incumbent President Goodluck Jonathan fell to APC’s General Mohammadu Buhari who is now the President-Elect of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The development has in no small degree thrown up tension in the polity even as today’s exercise comes underway.
Saturday Vanguard can authoritatively report that bandwagon effects are mounting in high places, giving APC an edge over PDP in some states with sitting PDP governors.
This however stems from the voting pattern that gave APC victory over PDP in the presidential election.
Candidate of APC, Buhari made an impressive inroad in the States controlled by the PDP and beat Jonathan.
For instance, Jigawa, Niger, Kaduna, Katsina, Gombe, Bauchi, Benue, Kebbi and Adamawa are all northern states where Buhari trounced Jonathan.
Details of the results showed that in Gombe, APC polled 361, 246 against PDP’s paltry 96, 873 votes. Bauchi APC polled 931,598 votes as against PDP’s slim 86,085 votes.
Kaduna the home state of the incumbent Vice President, Architect Namadi Sambo, APC beat PDP with whooping 1,127,760 to 484,085 votes. In Niger state, it was 657,678 to 149,222 even with the loquacious Governor Babangida Aliyu.
Katsina showed 100 percent solidarity to APC presidential candidate who won PDP with 1,345,441 to 98,937 votes.
Adamawa blessed Buhari with 374,701 as against PDP’s 251,664 votes.
The presence of the senate president, David Mark and that of Governor Gabriel Suswan in Benue couldn’t fly the PDP as it was trounced 373,961 to 303,737 votes.
Kebbi State also honored Buhari with 567,883 to 100,972 votes of the PDP.
President Jonathan was also beaten squarely in Governor Sule Lamido’s Jigawa State with 885,988 to 142,904 votes.
Many people had thought that with the presence of PDP Governors who mouthed massive supports for the president, the ruling party would win in those states. But they did.
APC did not only win the presidency, it also won majority seats in the Senate and the House of Representatives. In other words, the table has completely turned placing the party in the lead.
Obviously, APC’s victory has buoyed it up for more and more electoral successes. And going by the voting pattern in the last presidential, most analysts are of the opinion that Buhari’s victory would have bandwagon effects on the governorship and house of assembly elections today in some states under PDP governors now.
Feelers from Gombe State indicated that it would be an easy ride for APC as most members of PDP have even defected to APC. For instance, the incumbent member of House of Representatives representing Yelmatu Deba federal constituency who lost reelection has immediately after the National Assembly election defected to APC.
In the three senatorial districts of the state, APC won two leaving one for PDP.
Most people believe that this is not enough to garner support for PDP to win the gubernatorial election.
Many believe that the last voting pattern if repeated would win more states for the APC from PDP strong holds.
It may be taken for granted that APC would retain Kano, Sokoto, Borno, Kwara, Yobe, Adamawa, Ogun and Zamfara already in its kitty.
However, PDP also has some states especially in the south east and south where they are likely to record a landslide in today elections to retain the states.
Enugu, Ebonyi, Cross Rivers, Bayelsa, Delta, Abia States are the states
But there are states expected to be battlegrounds for both parties. They include Lagos, Imo, Taraba, Rivers, Nassarawa, Akwa Ibom and Plateau States.