Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Alhassan, also known as Mama Taraba, has resigned from President Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet and from the ruling All Progressives Congress.
Alhassan hinged her resignation on her disqualification in the screening for the 2019 Taraba state governorship contest by the APC National Working Committee.
She said she was axed without any viable or genuine reason.
“If I am not good enough to contest elections in the APC, then I feel I am not also qualified to remain a minister in the APC government,” she stated.
She thanked the president, her ward executives and other members of the party for the opportunity given her to serve.
Aisha Alhassan was the governorship candidate of the APC in the 2015 election in Taraba State.
She was the only one disqualified by the NWC out of 12 aspirants slated to run in the primaries scheduled for tomorrow.
Read her letter to President Buhari and also her letter to the APC. We must warn that her letter to the president starts with a typo: ‘resignition’ instead of resignation:
Below is her letter:
I write with a lot of respect to inform Mr President of my decision to resign my appointment as a minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and as a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC)
Your Excellency may wish to recall that I joined the APC in 2014 along with other members of the then new PDP, contested the 2015 governorship election as the flag bearer of the APC and to the Glory of God, you graciously nominated to be a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Your Excellency Mr President may wish to be reminded that I went through all the screening processes (security, medical and national assembly) as required by constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria after which I was cleared and approved as fit and proper for appointment as minister. Mr President, you therefore graciously appointed and swore me in as minister in November 2015.
Mr President may also wish to recall that I wrote to notify you of my intention to again contest for governor of my state in forthcoming 2019 election under the umbrella of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and you again graciously blessed my intention and wished me well through a letter personally signed by Mr President which I appreciate and will forever cherish.
Sir, I purchased the APC nomination forms and went for the party’s screening on Thursday, the 20th of September 2018 along with ten (10) other contestants for the governorship of my state, Taraba. I, with your permission, proceeded to Taraba on the 23rd of September 2018, to prepare for the presidential and governorship primaries then scheduled for the 25th and 29th of September 2018 respectively.
While preparing for the primaries in Jalingo, I received with the shock and dismay that I was disqualified and not cleared to contest for the 2019 governorship by the National Working Committee of the party (APC). No reason was given for my disqualification.
Mr President may wish to be also informed that I had always been a very committed and loyal party member and was at no time queried or admonished for any wrongdoing or unconstitutional behaviour. Up to the time of writing this letter, no reason is given by the party for my disqualification to contest election under the APC.
It is for the above reasons sir, that I feel grave injustice was done to me by the party (APC), therefore my decision to leave the party and also resign my appointment as minister. If I am not qualified to contest election in the APC, I feel I am also not qualified to remain a minister in an APC government.
May I at this point thank, appreciate and express my profound gratitude to Mr President for the honour, rare privilege and lifetime opportunity you gave me to serve under your great and credible leadership. I learnt a lot (especially patience) under your leadership. Working with you in the last almost three years was great and has immensely improved my leadership quality, I will remain forever grateful for that, sir.
May I also use this opportunity to thank his Excellency, the Vice President, from whom I have also learnt a lot and my colleagues, other members of the Federal Executive Council, the SGF and cabinet office staff for their fellowship and support to me both as minister and personally. May God Almighty reward them all, Amen.
While wishing Mr President continued good health and thanking you again for the opportunity given to me, please accept sir, the assurances of my best wishes always and absolute loyalty to you as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Thank you Sir.
Aisha Alhassan may however have incurred the wrath of the party when she declared in a BBC Hausa Service report last year September that she would support former vice-president Atiku Abubakar for the presidency, instead of President Buhari.
Abubakar is now a presidential aspirant, among a dozen other aspirants in the Peoples Democratic Party.
She said her choice of Abubakar was predicated on the fact that the former Vice President is her “godfather.”
“Atiku is my godfather even before I joined politics. And again, Baba Buhari did not tell us that he is going to run in 2019.
“Let me tell you today that if Baba said he is going to contest in 2019, I swear to Allah, I will go before him and kneel and tell him that ‘Baba I am grateful for the opportunity you gave me to serve your government as a minister, but Baba just like you know, I will support only Atiku because he is my godfather. If Atiku said he is going to contest.”
On the possibility of losing her job for rooting for Abubakar in 2019, Alhassan said, “If because of what I said, I am sacked, it will not bother me because I believe in Allah, that my time has elapsed that is why.
“Baba is not a mad man like those calling for my sack. They have been sending it and spreading that if Baba sees this I will be sacked.”
However, Buhari declined to sack her for the statement and she also reportedly went to beg the president to retain her job.
The remaining aspirants in the Taraba governorship race:
H.E. Sani Abubakar Danladi . Cleared
2.Sen. Joel Danlami Ikenya Cleared
3.Garba Umar-UTC Cleared
4.Prof. Mohammed Sanni Yahaya Cleared
5.Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama Cleared
6..Aliyu Omar, MON Cleared
7.Chief Ezekiel Afunkuyo Cleared
8.Chief David Sabo Kente Cleared
9.Mohammed Tumba Ibrahim Cleared
10.Barr. Kabiru Umaru, Esq. Cleared
11.Aliyu Omar, MON Cleared