From Edwin Olofu, Kano
Supporters of the incumbent Governor of Kano state, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje are still basking in the euphoria of heavy catch in their net last week.
Last week, political permutations changed in the ancient city, when former Governor of the state Malam Ibrahim Shekarau resigned his membership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and rejoined the All Progressives Congress (APC), ending weeks of speculations of his political future.
Crisis started brewing in the PDP, since the defection of former Governor of the state Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso from APC to PDP.
Our corespondent learnt on good authority that Kwankwaso had tabled a memorandum of understanding the RAPC had with the Liyel Imoke PDP contact committee.
The document allegedly ceded 51% control of the party structure in the state to Kwankwaso. While the trio of Shekarau, Former Minister of Foreign Affairs Ambassador Aminu Wali and Senator Bello Hayatu Gwarzo will share 49%.
Miffed by this, the trio petitioned the national headquarters of the party, against taking any decision which will undermine justice and fairness.
Peoples Daily gathered that, the national leadership of party threatened to dissolve the state executive if the stakeholders failed to reach agreement.
Interestingly, events took another dimension penultimate week, when some concerned party men approached a Kano high court, asking the court to restrain the National Working Committee (NWC), from tampering with the existing party structure of the party.
The presiding Judge, Justice N. S Umar in his rulings averred that an order has been granted ordering the applicants and the Respondents to maintain the status quo anter, pending the the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.
In the same vein the Judge said in his rulings on the case as filed by the State Chapter Chairman of the PDP Senator Jibrin El-Doguwa that an order of interim injunction is further granted restraining any other person or persons from interfering or tempering with the tenure of the existing leadership structure of PDP in Kano.
However, the NWC of the PDP In a terse statement signed by its publicity Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan
Dissolved the Kano state executive penultimate week, in flagrant disobedience of the Kano High court order restraining it from tempering with the state Executive.
The dissolution followed the constitution of a 7 man caretaker Committee headed by Kwankwaso’s henchman Rabiu Suleiman Bichi.
Of the seven man committee five are kwankwasiyya members while the two belong to the camps of Shekarau and Wali respectfully. Although Shekarau claimed he wasn’t consulted before the dissolution and the subsequent allotment of positions.
The dissolution did not go down well with followers of Shekarau, Wali and Gwarzo. More vocal against the action of the NWC is the Shekarau camp that vehemently rejected it.
Last week, supporters of the three stakeholders of the PDP in the state Shekarau, Wali and Gwarzo staged a protest at the headquarters of the party along Maiduguri road in Kano, demanding the reversal of the action.
Speaking on behalf of the trio, Engr Sarki Labaran said the action of the National Headquarters of the party is illegal and cannot stand.
Labaran frowned at the manner the former Governor of the state, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso have been conducting himself since he rejoined the party calls for concern, accusing him of causing disaffection in the once peaceful party.
The former Commissioner during the reign of Malam Ibrahim Shekarau stated that national party contradicted itself by the dissolution, noting that the state executive elected members of the National Working Committee , as such the NWC should also be dissolved.
Labaran wondered why such action should be taken by the national executive of the party, noted that the party executive tenure has not expired and such there were not found wanting that would warrant the dissolution.
Our corespondent further learnt that, soon pressure began to mount on the former Minister of Education Shekarau to return to APC.
The Presidency contacted Shekarau through Vice President Yemi Osibanjo, although the meeting made it the second time Osibanjo is meeting with Shekarau persuading him to return to APC.
Thereafter, Ganduje met Shekarau in Abuja where the issue of his defection was finalized by both parties.
The climax of the defection was the visit to Shekarau’s residence at Munduwa road Kano by the APC National chairman Comrade Adams Oshiohmole alongside Ganduje, Senator Kabiru Gaya and Senator Barau Jibrin among others.
At the meeting Shekarau dropped the hint that he is leaving the PDP.
His words: “Kwankwaso said that he wanted 51 percent and we said we are not willing to agree to that. This deliberation could not continue. We held four separate meetings with Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso and the Committee of Liyel Imoke. We went as far as granting delegates at the Ward level that would be shared between Aminu Wali’s group, my group and Kwankwaso’s group; but Kwankwaso said he does not recognize such, what he is after is that he would be granted 51 percent of the party structure at all levels; which we said we would not tolerate.
“On the basis of this, the National Chairman decided that we of the PDP in Kano are not cooperating. He felt we are not cooperating for unconstitutional act, because of this, he felt we have disagreed with the party and therefore, he pronounced the dissolution of the party structure in Kano which is unconstitutional; and we said we don’t recognize it.
“To make it worse, when he constituted the Caretaker Committee, the seven-member Caretaker Committee were all nominees of Dr. Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso and they are all from Kano. This has violated many constitutional provisions. The tradition of the party indicates that whenever it is necessary or constitutionally right to form a Caretaker Committee in a state, the chairman and secretary of the Committee must come from outside the state.
“In this case, that was not done. All the members of that Committee are from the Kwankwaso’s camp of the Kwankwasiyya. We said we cannot take this. We gave the party a deadline to restore the unconstitutional act of returning back the elected officers of the party. We also demanded that we don’t recognize automatic ticket because it is unconstitutional; it is against the spirit of democracy.
“We also said until when Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso agrees and accepts that two groups have been existing in Kano in the last five years—he must recognize and respect these groups of Aminu Wali, Ibrahim Shekarau, and he must see his own as the third group, we will not accept less. These were our conditions and when the deadline expired, we consulted; and I in particular came back and consulted with all my supporters and followers, with all stakeholders that are following our group, we agreed that in the whole issue, we are not respected, we are not recognized, we will not accept this, it is unconstitutional and we must take a decision.
“We considered three options, either we remain in PDP under this crazy, unconstitutional, unacceptable arrangement, which does not go down well with our people, or we abandon political activities or we move to another political party. We finally agreed and this is why we assembled here to inform our teeming supporters, our teeming followers that right from this day, in accordance with the decision of the stakeholders that we have consulted, we are abandoning our membership of the Peoples Democratic Party and we are declaring into the All Progressive Congress (APC). This is our stand.”
Peoples daily learnt from an impeccable source that the Kano central senatorial seat which Kwankwaso is occupying has been conceded to Shekarau by the APC.
Shekarau defected along side 12 Governatorial Aspirants who were contesting in the PDP and 774 ward PDP Chairmen and 43 PDP Local government Chairmen contestants into the APC’ s fold.
For political pundits in the state the present day reality in kano politics is hinged on three heavyweights, Shekarau, Ganduje and Kwankwaso.
Before the defection of Shekarau the polity was a bit unpredictable but with Shekarau joining forces with Ganduje in APC. The fortune of the party in next year is bright, the party stands a good chance of sweeping the polls.
As it is, Kwankwaso stand alone in PDP to contend with the two strongmen of kano politics, because Wali may not leave the PDP but he is aloof owing to the high handed ness of Kwankwaso.
Ganduje, buttressed the above assertion by pundits at Shekarau ‘s house while welcoming him to the APC.
“I’m elated today to see my friend and a brother who return to APC, together we will fight the hyena and we will triumph in sha Allahu”.
Ironically, the spokesperson of Kwnkwaso Binta Spikin doesn’t believe the defection of Shekarau will affect the fortunes of the PDP in kano.
“ In the first place we don’t share the same ideology with Shekarau in Kwankqasiyya. So his leaving the party is good for us, we wish him well and I want to assure our teeming supporters to remain focus and work for the victory of the party in 2019.”