By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
As preparations for the 2019 general elections continue to gather momentum, political alliances, intrigues and marching orders have continued to dominate the political space. Though the tension and controversy generated by the party primaries are yet to die down, political actors are still perfecting plans on how to come out from the forthcoming political battle successful.
While the contest in some states may not attract much attention, some other states like Kwara have been declared as battlefield following the caliber of the political actors and the recent realignment that saw the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki defecting from the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
The Saraki family has been dominating the political landscape of Kwara State for many decades. Before now it appeared that no force could dislodge the Saraki dynasty.
However, many Kwara indigenes have seen in Alhaji Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq a political force capable of changing the equation in Kwara. Abdulrahman is from the famous Abdulrazaq family. The father was a first republic minister. He is the APC flag bearer in the state.
The candidature of Alhaji Abdulrazaq, is a business mogul and philanthropist, has also received the blessings of President Muhammadu Buhari, the Presidential candidate of the APC in the forthcoming election.
The President at a closed door meeting on Monday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja with leaders and stakeholders of the APC, commended all the governorship aspirants in the last party primaries who he said decided to embrace peace and lend their support to Alhaji Abdulrazaq so as to liberate the state from the grip of the Saraki’s.
With the quality of the APC governorship candidate and the political gladiators behind him and the party in the election, President Buhari expressed confidence that his party will take over the mantle of leadership in Kwara State, come 2019.
The President who received APC members from the three senatorial zones of Kwara State thanked the stakeholders for the position they have taken to continue to support the party regardless of the outcome of the primaries and assured them that, with the unity displayed so far, APC will form the government in Kwara State after the 2019 elections.
He also enjoined Nigerians to remain faithful and loyal to the country in all their dealings, saying, “You don’t have to be in uniform to be loyal. What I said long ago in 1984 is still valid today. We have no other country but Nigeria. Others who feel they have another country may choose to go. We will stay here and salvage it together.”
On his part, the governorship standard bearer told the State House correspondents that with the caliber of members of the party, the dominance of the Senate President in the Kwara politics was over.
Abdulrazaq said that the President has given them a marching order to ensure that APC wins the 2019 governorship election.
According to him, “Kwara has become a battle ground and as you can see, we have come here to see Mr. President having gone through a hectic process of primaries. We went through direct primaries in which about a hundred thousand party faithful voted.
“We had our difficulties but we have come to see the President to tell him that all is well and we are in unison and he has given us matching orders to go and take Kwara.
Abdulrazaq added yesterday that “we’ll transform Kwara and make the place different.”
There is no doubt that Alhaji Abdulrazaq has the competence, ability and political sagacity to put smiles on the faces of Kwara people if eventually he emerges victorious in the 2019 governorship election, but some political observers think that he has a herculean task before him to confront and dislodge Bukola Saraki.