In one of his inspirational quotes, the late Indian activist and leader of the country’s independence movement against British rule, Mahatma Ghandi did say: ‘’it is always a mystery for me how people can respect themselves when they humiliate other humans.’’
Of course, respect is reciprocal and anyone who wants to be respected within a clime must equally respect others – their rights, feelings, and, in fact, their opinions. This mutually respectful relationship often stays until one party does something awful to lose their respect in the eyes of the other.
It is indeed a wonder when some supposed elder statesmen look away from this morally binding responsibility of respecting others and yet insist that people respect or recognize them.
In Bauchi State and indeed the entire Northern part of the country, one name that sounds familiar within the ranks of our elders is that of Mohammed Bello Kirfi, the suspended Wazirin Bauchi. Yes, as a former minister of Special Duties in the presidency during the regime of President Olusegun Obasanjo, Bello Kirfi was a man who usually commanded a great deal of respect and recognition.
But if the Bauchi Emirate Council could suspend the Wazirin Bauchi for any reason, the ordinary citizens of Bauchi State should take a closer look at him.
But the elder statesman has had great influence in the state.
His son, Yakubu Bello Kirfi, was a commissioner in the state during the Malam Isa Yuguda administration, and at a certain time under the Adamu Muazu’s administration, he was said to have nominated two commissioners, Altine Tongo and Sale Toro. One could clearly see the only unforgivable offence Governor Abubakar has committed.
In a democracy, Bello Kirfi reserves his full rights to be subjective in supporting any person he wishes in a governorship contest. However, he must recognize that the teeming voting population of Bauchi reserve theirs too. Therefore, no reactionary and selfish reasons will ever strip us from our rights to use our objective and rational sense of judgment to chose between right and wrong, good and bad, reality and imaginary.
Knowing who Governor Abubakar is, he will never cede the fortunes of the state to those who think only about advancing their self interest. The “bob’s your uncle syndrome” no longer has a place under the transparent stewardship of Governor Abubakar.
In fact, it requires right thinking and reasoning to appreciate how the very many challenges Governor Abubakar inherited are being handled.
Recall that Alhaji Abubakar emerged governor when the federal allocation to the state was at its lowest as a result of a sharp fall in crude oil prices in the international market.
The state’s internally generated revenue (IGR) also was nothing to write home about. But with an unwavering determination to liberate the state from a virtual economic stagnation, Governor Abubakar devised workable means of cutting the cost of governance by weeding out ghost workers at both the state and local government levels. With this administrative genius, the people’s governor was able to immediately commence payment of salary backlogs at all levels and subsequently carry on with payment of salaries as and when. This is beyond the realm of possibility in many states of the Federation. It is indeed a wonder how, in the face of these achievements, some so-called elders were not happy when President Buhari applauded Mr Abubakar’s efforts for judiciously utilizing the bailout and Paris Club refunds. As a worthy son who has done us proud, many would expect elders – so called – to beam with joy and shower prayers. Well, this is what we see.
So today, apart from repositioning the civil service, reviving the ailing industries with a meagre allocation that can barely settle the recurrent expenditure, Bauchi is wearing a new look with ongoing road construction projects across the state.
Abubakar’s urban renewal drive extends to many local government areas. Hospitals have been built in all the 20 local government areas. Some state owned industries have been refurbished and are being put into use. Classrooms are being constructed while dilapidated ones have received face-lift.
Agriculture as an alternative sources of revenue has been boosted by the annual procurement of fertilizer and distribution to the peasant farmers at highly subsidized rates. Procurement and distribution of modern agricultural implements under the massive agricultural mechanization drive is also an incontrovertible evidence of Governor Abubakar’s revolutionary leadership.
Therefore, come 2019, we are going vote for continuity and consolidation as we cannot afford to allow those with deficient image and quantum of uncleared corruption charges hanging on their necks to ever again have access to our treasury or even come close to the seat of power to ravage our dear state.
–Umar wrote in from Bauchi