By Ndahi Marama
Hon. Yusuf Adamu was one time the Secretary of the Defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP during Governor Ali Modu Sheriff’s tenure in the state. He was also Caretaker Chairman of Biu Local Government Area and a grass root politician.
In this interview with Weekend Vanguard, Adamu spoke on power shift to the Southern Borno Senatorial District and other issues. Excerpts:
Recently 14 senators and 37 members of the House of Representatives decamped from the party that brought them to power and joined another party; what is your take on it?
It is normal in politics. To stay in APC is very difficult, because it is no longer business as usual. People cannot loot anyhow in Buhari’s administration. So, most of those who left APC recently did so because they felt they could not continue to stay in a ruling party where there is no room for corruption.
So, I am not surprised with their defection. Some of them want to become governors in their states and with the new leadership of Adams Oshiomole in place, they know the kind of due process they would have to follow before securing the platform of the party. Some of them came back to the APC and said they were deceived, while some of them were given money to defect. Some of them realised they made a great mistake and they came back to the ruling party. All these are part of the beauty of democracy.
Do you have a strong belief that Buhari will still win in 2019?
Absolutely, if you look at the recent bye -elections in Bauchi, Katsina and Kogi states where APC won. It has shown that people still believe in APC under President Buhari. In Akwa Ibom state where our party was non-existing before, APC is getting stronger by the day. Many people are coming to APC on a daily basis. We believe by the grace of God Buhari will be re -elected as our President with unprecedented votes.
Recently, the people of your zone held a Southern Borno summit in Maiduguri, what is the summit all about?
I believe in good governance and fairness, equity and justice. People of Southern Borno, the northern and central Borno have been working together. People from my geopolitical zone are hard working and believe in unity of the state and it is not wrong for them to aspire to be the governor of the state.
We have capable hands who are well educated and have what it takes to lead the state. Since independence, no son or daughter of southern Borno has been given the opportunity to become the governor of this state. So it is high time for us to be given the opportunity. It is high time for the minority in the state to produce the next governor, though it happened once when Alhaji Ashieik Zamorarma who was from the minority became the governor of the state for just three months. So it is time for the minority to be given the chance to test their capability and move the state forward.
Most speakers at the summit emphasized on unity, do you think the people of southern Borno will unite to pursue this goal of power shift?
It is not only unity of the people of southern Borno, but the unity among all the people of Borno from all the 27 local government areas because you need the support of all the local governments before you can win the governorship position. You have to cross the ocean, the valley and every nook and cranny of the state from the wards to the units. If you observed during the summit, people from Gwoza, Askira-Uba were there but we have to cross southern Borno and go to Guzamala, Marte, Kukawa, Bama, Gomboru Ngala, Damasak, Gubio and so many LGAs in Northern and Central Borno to seek their support
What is your assessment of the government of Governor Kashim Shettima who will soon complete his second term in Borno?
Governor Kashim Shettima has really tried despite the security challenges posed by the Boko Haram sect. He has done very well. If you go to my council, Biu, this government has renovated Waka Science Secondary School, Government Girls Secondary School (GGSS) Biu, GGSS Miringa, and Primary schools in Mandaragirau which is my native village have been renovated. Shettima has also renovated schools in Bayo, Kwaya-kusar, Hawul, Shani, Damboa, Maiduguri Metropolis, and other local government areas in the state. It would interest you to know that this government is building a befitting State University along Damaturu- Maiduguri road. The work has reached 80% completion, and it is expected to be commissioned and take off soon before the end of this year. So the government had done well despite the insecurity.