By Suzan Edeh
IF the outcome of the March 28 Presidential and National Assembly polls in Bauchi State and the political atmosphere is anything to go by, the All Progressives Congress (APC) will record easy victories in Saturday’s Governorship and State Assembly elections in the state.
Following the overwhelming victory of General Muhammadu Buhari (retd) of the APC, the political atmosphere in the state has become saturated with the aroma of victory for the party.
Currently, there is what appears as a two-horse race for the governorship between Auwal Jatau of the PDP and Mohammed Abubakar of the APC. With the twist of political events in favour of the APC, many believe that it will be difficult for the PDP governorship candidate to clinch the most exalted office in the state.
As it stands, APC supporters in the state are still celebrating Buhari’s victory, a development that dampened the morale of PDP supporters. To this end, the PDP campaign offices have been under lock and key with their leaders no where to be found. To worsen the matter, campaign billboards of the PDP bearing the picture of President Goodluck Jonathan, PDP National Chairman, Ahmed Mu’azu, Governor Isa Yuguda have been destroyed.
The popular proverb that failure is an orphan aptly captures the political situation as many supporters of the PDP are finding their ways to the APC to avoid discrimination and criticism and the development may hurt PDP at the April 11 governorships polls.
Before the Presidential and National Assembly election in the state, Governor Isa Yuguda, during his campaign tour with Auwal Jatau, had appealed to the people of the state to vote for the party governorship candidate, saying that he would bring the much-needed development to the state. Many political pundits at that time expressed optimism that he would win the governorship election because of certain factors to his advantage such as power of incumbency and endorsement by powerful stakeholders in the state.
Indeed, Jatau, the anointed candidate polled 368 votes in the governorship primaries to defeat four aspirants in the contest.
On the other hand, APC governorship candidate, Mohammed Abubakar based his campaigns on the lines of the need for a change of government by the people due to the injustice perpetrated by the ruling PDP, popularity of General Buhari and the support the people gave CPC in 2011 general election.
Abubakar, a lawyer from Bauchi North, won the APC governorship primaries in Bauchi State after scoring 934 votes to beat seven other aspirants.
Now that destiny has smiled on the APC, many of the electorates have pledged their support for the Abubakar, saying they need a change of government right from the presidency to the state level.
For Sani Mainoma, a civil servant in Bauchi State, voting only APC candidates is the right thing to do to usher in a new government.
“Voting for only APC candidates in subsequent election is the right thing to do because when our leader General Buhari visited the state on two occasions during his campaign tour, he told us to vote only APC candidates from the top to the bottom. He told us not to leave anything for the PDP, even a position of a councillor should not be given to them and that is what I am going to do.”
Sanusi Gabas, who resides in Bauchi local council, said: “I can never vote for any candidate in the PDP because of what we experienced under their leadership in the state. This is not about sentiments or because Buhari won, but we suffered under their reign. There were problems in the state ranging from poverty, insecurity, unemployment, non-payment of workers allowances among others” Sanusi lamented.’’