Recently, there were reports that Governor Muhammadu Umaru Jibrill Bindow of Adamawa state is planning to defect from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the Peoples Democratic People (PDP), but Mr. Bindow and some of his aides have vehemently denied it. In fact, Mr. Bindow was quoted to have aid “he will die in APC”.
These continuous build up of rumours about a possible defection to the PDP by Governor Bindow is based on facts that are potent. Recently, there was a rare, high-level interaction between Governor Bindow and one of the closest aides to former vice president Atiku Abubakar, Jidda Pariya. Pariya was in Dubai for medical vacation and Bindow, purposely visited Dubai just to see Pariya. Reports stated that it was in fact, Pariya’s vehicles that conveyed Bindow from the Airport to see Pariya at his quarters. When Pariya came back to Nigeria, Bindow, with the fanfare of Governors’ office went to Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport to receive him. Pariya was given special treatment with the governor’s convoy.
Governor Bindow’s cabinet is populated with many of Atiku’s men, Commissioners of Justice, Heath, Commerce and Land & Survey and other aides were handpicked by Atiku. Recently, the commissioners of Commerce and Land & Survey resigned from the cabinet to join Atiku’s presidential campaign. Though, two of the most educated commissioners- Atiku’s biological daughter Dr. Fatima Abubakar and Commissioner of Justice, Barrister Silas D. Sanga are still in Bindow’s cabinet. During the swearing-in of the two commissioners’ replacements, Governor Bindow openly said he still misses the former commissioners, covertly implying a connection-political- with them.
Governor Bindow has history of divided loyalty to APC and Buhari Presidential campaign. On many occasions, Governor Bindow has shown that his political interest is skewed towards Atiku’s presidential ambition. Governor Bindow always appears ‘self-confident’ in the foggy cloud that is Adamawa politics, because of his clandestine reliance on Atiku’s pedigree of victory in political battles and arsenal, which is renowned for rightly dealing with weak adversaries.
As a top level politician, Bindow has failed woefully- this fact is earmarked by his failure to manage the broadening disaffection within his own party and the continuously growing chasm between himself and the top echelon of the APC in the state. Governor Bindow erred by sidelining many members of the legacy parties- ACN, CPC and the ANPP. The strongest of the stakeholders, the Murtala Nyako group was so aggrieved, that they left the APC to pitch tent with the African Democratic Congress (ADC).
With the emergence of strong governorship contenders like Mallam Nuhu Ribadu (MNR) and Dr. Mahmood Halilu (Modi) in the Adamawa APC, Governor Bindow will not find it easy to secure a return ticket. Thus, the governor and his supporters are strongly opposed to the APC conducting direct primaries to select governorship aspirant for the fear of losing the ticket. With the odds seemingly against Bindow, the PDP appears to be the only place for a soft landing for him.
Atiku owns the soul and body of Adamawa PDP. The PDP can serve as a relief for Bindow; while Bindow’s modest achievement of roads construction, though one of the most expensive roads in the world, will serve as a basis for Atiku to give Bindow the PDP Adamawa gubernatorial ticket and at the same time, use it as a campaign weapon for the governorship elections.
Notwithstanding all these permutations, Bindow still has the resources and incumbency, which gives him a coveted advantage. He simply lacks established political structures and strong grassroots party support, thus he is always in need of someone to fight his own battle for him. Bindow is like a general in a war; with lots of sophisticated weapons, but easily get frightened by a single shot.
Zayyad I. Muhammad writes from Jimeta, Adamawa state. Reachable via: firstname.lastname@example.org