By Muhammadu Dan Sa’idu
A popular Hausa proverb says Bakin Rijiya Ba Wajen Wasan Makaho Ba Ne, meaning ‘a blind man cannot play in front of an open well’. Ordinarily, I may not have any reason to respond to the above captioned article which was widely published in many national dailies a fortnight ago, but for the one published in This Day Newspaper of Tuesday, April 29, 2014. In the said publication, the Katsina state governor, Barrister Ibrahim Shema while commenting on the strength of his party in relation to the PDM threat dismissed the party and even went further to dismiss our darling, APC which is not only a threat to Katsina PDP but the remains the nightmare of the party (PDP) at the centre. In fact what baffles me most is the chest beating of the governor who said not even the involvement of one of the APC leaders, General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) who hails from the state, would change the political equation in the state during the next general election. I found this statement not only funny but laughable. However, I don’t blame the governor; he is a Lawyer as such he appreciates Law better than politics.
Though, I don’t belong to the PDM, but at a point we were in the same party, the CPC, and I stand to be corrected, PDP in Katsina has never faced the greatest threat to its existence in the state than during the 2011 elections and up till now the party only exist in name. As such the author of that article was right, the contest now is between APC and PDM.
Lest some of us forget, in the 2011 elections the CPC candidates belonging to the group led by no other person than Senator Yakubu Lado Danmarke swept most of the National Assembly positions by winning all the 3 senatorial seats and 12 members of the House of Representatives while the PDP was left with a paltry 3 seats of House of Reps. Except for the internal squabble of the CPC and the eventual support given to the PDP by the same Senator Lado group Shema wouldn’t have return as the governor of the state.
It was an open secret how Shema begged Lado and solicited for his support and in return Lado granted him the request having felt betrayed by some powers that be in his party, the CPC. That singular act by Senator Lado was what gave Shema the edge. And I bet, if Lado had refused to support Shema the result would have been different today. This very group is now the new PDM in Katsina and to any discerning mind how can any right thinking politician or analyst dismiss this group in the politics of Katsina state. Unless such a politician is embarking on political suicide or misadventure, the reality is that, as things stands today, the fear of PDM in Katsina is the beginning of wisdom.
It is common in politics to see leaders being deluded by the reality around them, otherwise how can anyone, not even Shema, think PDP still exists in Katsina, given the number of its chieftains that left such as former Minister of Agriculture, Abba Sayyadi Ruma, former Special Adviser to late President Yar’Adua on Economic Affairs, Dr. Tanimu Kurfi, former Speakers of the state House of Assembly, SalisuFago and Kofa. Under the watch of the current PDP government in Katsina, a former deputy governor of the state, AbullahiGarbaAminchi and some key members of the party including former influential National Assembly members and other big wigs dumped the PDP. So where is the party? A cursory look at official gatherings in the state will show that only government appointees and their aides attend such functions.
One of the arguments canvased by the governor to buttress his argument of being undefeatable by any party is his track record of work. This statement too is laughable as those of us who have been in Katsina politics know the history of the projects claimed to have been executed by the Shema led government. In fact most if not all of the projects were in the 2007 which was initiated and prepared by the late President Yar’adua while serving as the governor of the state. The only tangible project initiated and executed by the current administration in Katsina is the N8 billion government house which was built at the expense of other key sectors such as Health, Education, Water Resources and Agriculture. In fact Dustin Ma town where Shema hails from is worst hit by water scarcity in Katsina state despite their son being the Governor of the state.
The same government is claiming to be transparent; this is a matter of another day. But as indigenes of the state may we know how much the state government has received in the last eight years and how the monies were spent. This is the yard stick for the assurance of our votes in 2015, if this is done I assure you I would be the one to lead mass exodus from the APC to your side.
It is on record that since the commencement of the current Katsina state government in 2007 no attempt was made to conduct elections into the local councils despite the hundreds of billions received by the state governments on their behalf. This reminds me of the back-to-sender saga which is another topic for another day.
In order to let sleeping dog lies, we caution the PDP led government in Katsina to stay clear from attacking our leader, General Muhammadu Buhari and our party, APC. This advice became necessary in view of the governor’s recent attack on the peoples general as earlier explained at the beginning of this piece. They should contend with their losses and allow us to face our new challenger, the PDM which is led by the man whose mention in Katsina politics makes some people to enter mosque without removing their shoes due to shock and confusion at hearing Senator Yakubu Lado Damnmarke.
Muhammadu Dan Sa’idu wrote in from Kofar Kaura Katsina.