By Yakubu Mustapha, Minna
The Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello on assumption of office in May 29, 2015 has consistently seen President Muhammadu Buhari as a role model that he is trying to emulate. He always strives to implement to logical conclusion Mr. President’s federal policies as they affect the state and the people.
These policies and programmes includes N-Power, Anchor Borrowers Scheme of the CBN, School Feeding Programme as well as Trader Money in which the common masses, down trodden, local farmers, market women and housewife’s of various categories benefitted including the opposition political parties.
Governor Abubakar Sani Bello during his flag off campaign at trade fair complex Minna, reassured the National leadership of the party as well as the Presidency of the determination of the state chapter of the party to reenact the 2015 electoral success of the party’s candidates in the 2019 general elections, saying that Niger State is for APC.
Another factor that contributed to the APC victory in the state was the announcement of the defection of the Former Deputy Governor and the Ambassador to South Africa Ambassador Ahmed Musa Ibeto from the PDP with some others back to APC at a rally marked the total disarray of the major opposition party in Niger State.
The APC than formally received some notable defectors to the Niger State Chapter of the APC, which includes; four PDP governorship aspirants like Amb Ahmed Musa Ibeto, Engr Hannafi Muazu Sudan, Dr. Aminu Mohammad Baka and Hon. Ahmed Dogon Koli as well as the former State PDP Chairman, Abdulrahman Enagi and the State PDP Treasurer, Buhari Abdullahi Ibeto and over ten thousand (10,000) others who dumped the PDP from the 25 local governments in the state.
The State APC Chairman, Engr. Muhammad Jibril Imam in a press briefing recently said that unlike the PDP, the APC’s strength as the clock thickens towards the election year is it’s development stride across the state.
“They are jittery about our performance; they know that they have lost the elections before the contest even begins” he noted.
He informed that due to the performance of the APC administration many PDP stalwarts have defected to its fold including some key PDP stakeholders in the state hence would take advantage of the defectors to have their victory.
Imam further explained that among the major development strides of APC administration in the State is in the water, education, health sectors; payment of pension arrears; regular payment of salaries and roads and power supply amongst others in which the party would leverage on to convince the electorates to get second term victory come 2019 general elections.
“Let me inform you that the All Progressives Congress (APC) as a political party in Niger state is one of the party that have no faction, we have tried our best to make sure that we are factionless as a result of our leadership style and that of our leader who is Mr. Governor.
“He has been cooperating well with the party not recognizing what your hearing outside, internally we are working very well as a result of the time of the primaries and after the primaries of the party.
“The party is now well positioned to win 2019 general elections by God’s grace. We are in a happy family and because of that we hold regular meetings with the relevant stakeholders like the local government party Chairmen and they in turn did same also with other structures of the party which is not regular in some other states in the country.
“The party has as a package of well over 50,000 party executives across the state and we are able to manage them to ensure their pledge and loyalty to this party (APC) and we hope that with this loyalty will be translated into massive mobilization towards winning the 2019 elections. So this is the highlight of the situation of the party currently” he stated.
Apparently, the incumbent President and the presidential candidate of All Progressive Congress (APC) Muhammadu Buhari swept all the twenty five (25) local government areas in Niger state with 612,571 votes against former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar of the PDP who scored 218,052 votes in the presidential election held on Saturday.
According to result released in Minna at the INEC office the state has 2,375,578 registered voters but only 911,964 were accredited with 851,937 valid votes for the state.
Consequently, a total of 896,976 votes were cast during the last presidential election in the state with no fewer than 41,039 rejected votes for the entire state.
While presenting the results by the collation officers at the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC office in Minna the state capital, some of them revealed that some few polling units in different zones of the state were cancelled due to over voting, ballot box snatching and violence.
Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officially declared Dr. Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi of the APC as the elected Senator for Niger North Senatorial District. Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi of the APC polled 161,420, while Hon Muhammad Sani Duba of the PDP polled 77,109.
The returning officer at the constituency collation centre, Prof Musa Mathew Kolo declared the results at the Senatorial Collation Center FCE Kontagora.
In another development, Alhaji Mohammed Bima Enagi of the All Progressives Congress has been declared the winner of the Niger South Senatorial election having polled a total of 160,614 votes ahead of the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, Shehu Baba Agaie who polled a total of 90,978 votes.
In the same vein, Mohammed Sani Musa (313) of the All Progressives Congress has been declared winner the Niger East Senatorial District Election having polled total votes of 229,415 ahead of the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party Candidate who polled a total of 116,143 votes.
The declaration was made by the Returning Officer for the Niger East Senatorial District election, Prof Audu Jiga hence this has indicated that the three Senatorial Zones of Niger state were won by the ruling APC.
Furthermore, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) also announced the winners of the Niger State House of Representative members with the APC sweeping all the seats in the state.
Consequently, Rijau/Magama Federal Constituency the APC candidate Hon. Shehu Sale Slow got 39,889 votes against its closest rival Garba Dukku of the PDP who scored 23,747 votes.
Borgu-Agwara Federal Constituency the APC (Jafaru Mohammed Agwara) polled 32,848 votes against the PDP (Abdurahman Bala Gambo) who got 20,357 votes.
Also in Bida-Katcha-Gbako Federal Constituency APC (Abdullahi Saidu Musa) polled 57,746 winning the PDP (Sharu Mohammed Baba) – 37,993 votes.
Similarly, Suleja-Gurara-Tafa Federal Constituency APC (Hon. Abubakar Lado Suleja) scored 54,224 votes against his counterpart in the PDP who got 38,732 votes.
Furthermore, Chanchaga Federal Constituency the incumbent APC member Hon. Mohammed Umar Bago won with 39,391 votes against the PDP candidate Abdullahi Buba who scored 17,869 votes.
In Kontagora-Mariga-Mashegu-Wushishi Federal Constituency APC (name not announced due to court case) 95,454 vote with the PDP (Sa’adatu Kolo) scoring 25,182 votes.
Apparently, Bosso/ Paiko, Shiroro/ Munya, Lapai/ Agaie and Lavun/ Edati/ Mokwa Federal constituencies were won by the APC candidates who are Shehu Barwa Beji, Saidu Umar, Mahmoud Mohammed Agaie and Abdullahi Usman Gbatamangi respectively.
The just concluded presidential election has signal what is expected in Niger state gubernatorial and state assembly elections because this has indicated that the PDP sins have not being forgiven by the electorate most especially the rural dwellers.
But the battle is not over as investigations revealed that voters came out to vote because of President Muhammadu Buhari and may probably decide the other way round in the next election hence the need of the party to do extra mobilization’ and sensitization to capture the minds of those looking elsewhere on the need to go one way.