The first elected governor of Gombe State, Abubakar Habu Hashidu, is dead.
According to a family source, the politician died yesterday morning at the age of 74 at his residence in Gombe after a protracted illness.
A state government official, who also confirmed the death of the former governor, said the state governor, Ibrahim Dankwambo, was expected to attend the burial prayers at the Emir’s palace by 5pm yesterday and thereafter proceed for the burial.
Hashidu, a founding member of the defunct All Peoples Party (APP), was governor of Gombe State from May 1999 to May 2003 under the platform of the APP.
The deceased also served as Minister of Water Resources as well as Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development during the military regime of General Ibrahim Babangida (rtd).
The late Hashidu was a member of the Vision 2010 committee set up by the late head of state, General Sani Abacha.
In January 2003 the APP endorsed him as its gubernatorial candidate for the April 2003 elections. He failed to be reelected and conceded gracefully, praising INEC saying he would not contest the result.
Hashidu was again candidate for governor of Gombe State in 2007 on the DPP platform. He was arrested in March 2007 and put on trial over violence that allegedly broke out after he started his political campaign.
Armed supporters stormed the magistrate’s court, freeing Hashidu and wounding the judge presiding over his case.