Prominent politicians in Katsina State have been jostling to replace the late Senator Mustapha Bukar in the red chamber but the quitting of President Muhammadu Buhari’s nephew from the race has brought new intrigues into the contest, writes Andy Asemota.
The seat of Katsina North Senatorial District became vacant following the death of Senator Mustapha Bukar, last month.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it will conduct bye election for the seat, which threw many prominent people from Katsina North senatorial district into the contest. But one of the front liners being considered likely to clinch the APC ticket for the upcoming bye elections for the Senate seat, Hon. Musa Haro, a nephew to President Muhammadu Buhari has quit from the race.
In a statement published on his Facebook campaign handle, Hon. Haro confirmed his withdrawal from the race.
His withdrawal from the race might not be unconnected to the calls for President Muhammadu Buhari to seek for a second in office.
Haro is widely regarded as one of the five front liners capable of winning the Senate race.
Other front liners being considered in the race include a 72-years-old retired federal civil servant, Dr. Salisu Ingawa, a former Katsina State Governorship aspirant in the 2015 APC primaries, Architect Ahmed Kabiru Abdullahi, member representing Ingawa-Kankiya- Kusada Federal constituency, Hon. Ahmed Babba Kaita; member representing Baure-Zango Federal constituency, Hon. Nasiru Sani Zangon Daura, and former speaker of the Katsina State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Yau Gwajogwajo.
Hon. Musa Haro, Arc. Ahmed Kabiru Abdullahi and Dr. Salisu Ingawa were said to be eyeing the senate seat for 2019 even before the demise of Senator Mustapha Bukar.
They are widely believed to have the grass roots support of the party across the 12 Local governments of Katsina North.
Hons Ahmed Babba Kaita, Nasiru Sani Zangon and Yau Gwajogwajo were said to have show interest after the death of Senator Bukar and have not had enough time to actually galvanise support beyond their immediate Local Governments.
It is generally believe that the Katsina North Senatorial Seat was zoned to the 5 Local Governments of Daura Emirate which include Daura, Maiadua, Baure, Sandamu and Zango.
There is a great sympathy for the Emirate to retain the senate seat since it became vacant as a result of the death of the Senator and not as a result of any shortcomings.
This has made the stage clear for the trio of Arc. Ahmed Kabiru Abdullahi who is from Maiadua Local Government, Hon. Nasiru Sani from Zangon Daura Local Government and Hon. Yau Umar Gwajogwajo also from Maiadua Local Government.
Hon. Yau Gwajogwajo who decamped to the APC early this year, organised a big rally in his Gwajogwajo home in Maiadua Local Government with a great show of strength. The rally saw the attendance of His Excellency, the Governor of Katsina State and many high level officials of the APC. However, a close associate of the former Speaker who preferred to speak under anonymity revealed that they are being cautious on the issue of his contest, especially as the former speaker is having problem mobilising the support of the APC Excos in the zone especially in his Maiadua Local Government with whom he had bitter rivalry while he was in the PDP during which he contested for the same Senate seat and lost. “We are being careful and this is why Speaker has not declared his aspiration publicly,” he said.
Hon. Nasiru Sani Zangon Daura is banking on the support of his father, Alhaji Sani Zangon Daura, a powerful former Minister during the Obasanjo regime.
He is hoping to turn things around in favour of his son, his successor (Magajin Baba) despite his late entry into the race.
His contest will create another lacuna for the APC since the party also has to work assiduously to win back his Baure Zango seat of the Federal House of Reps in yet another 2018 Bye-Elections to be conducted within this short time and also win the 2019 elections for the same position. Arc. Ahmed Kabiru Abdullahi, the Executive Secretary of the Lagos State Water Regulatory Commission is seen as the face of Change and is popular especially among the youth, women and within the party leadership.
He attracts large crowds across the 12 local governments of Katsina North. His contest in the 2015 APC primaries for the governorship elections has portrayed him as a great hero being the only one that has ever contested for the Katsina state governorship position from Daura Emirate in recent history.
His closeness with governor Aminu Bello Masari and many top officials of the Katsina state government as well as top APC officials stems from the fact that he is the only former Katsina State Governorship aspirant in the APC that has maintained unflinching supporter of governor Aminu Bello Masari and his administration till date. Many also point to his successful political career, knowledge, impeccable English oratory, wealth of experience in government and his social interaction with other ethnic nationalities as availed by cosmopolitan Lagos as making him the most qualified for such high level representation to fill the vacuum created by the death of Senator Mustafa Bukar, a Water Resources Engineer.
With the withdrawal of Hon. Musa Haro, who was seen as the only one capable of posing a major threat to Arc. Ahmed Kabiru Abdullahi’s emergence as the APC flag bearer, coupled with the support he is enjoying from the party leadership across the 12 local governments and that of top officials of the Katsina state government for standing firmly in support of the governor and his various programmes, the coast may well be clear for the ‘waterman,’ Architect Ahmed Kabiru Abdullahi, the former Governorship Aspirant to replace the late Senator Mustapha Bukar, as the Senator representing Katsina North in the red chamber.
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