The story had it that the President of the United States of America was confronted with a problem and told Adam Munro that whichever option he chose, men would still die. It was then that the CIA agent told him that in the ‘firm,’ they called it the Devils Alternative. The political development in Bauchi State where the state governor, Malam Isa Yuguda, is allegedly plotting to have his deputy impeached provides almost the same scenario for him. Whether he succeeds in doing away with his deputy or not, Yuguda will no longer have it good with the people and the hand writing to that effect is very boldly written on the wall.
Yuguda decamped to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), on April 14. The governor’s defection to his former party, which he was frustrated into leaving on the eve of the 2007 general elections, would not have generated much furore if he was not massively elected on the ticket of the rival All Nigeria People party (ANPP), which accommodated him soon after he was eased out of the PDP. It would not have raised many eyebrows either if his deputy, Alhaji Muhammad Garba Gadi, or other important personalities within the party, had decamped along with him. But they didn’t.
The governor’s defection has not only caused much controversy but has made him somehow unpopular with the masses who not only voted for him on April 4, 2007, but laboured to have him declared the winner of the election through what has come to be known as the Bauchi formula of A KASA, A TSARE, A RAKA. Reports say after his defection, the governor, who was the darling of almost all the talakawas in Bauchi State, soon became the target of their attacks. More than twice, his convoy was attacked by angry youth who threw stones and chanted slogans like, BAMA SO, “we don’t want”.
Politicians in the state expected the governor to have shun his unpopular move into the PDP, but alas, he seems to have plunged into another crisis! The governor’s ploy to have his deputy impeached by the state House of Assembly has again pitched Yuguda against the masses adding salt to injury.
Impeachment moves against the deputy governor have reached, what can be described as advance stage though they are still wobbling. The question however is what will be the fate of Yuguda after he succeeds in removing his deputy, who preferred to remain in the ANPP against the wish of his boss?
Investigation by Weekly Trust has revealed that the state governor may be playing into the hands of those in the PDP he defeated who are plotting for the failure of his administration.
Abdullahi Muhammad is a 75-year-old ex-service man and resident of Kobi in Bauchi metropolis. He told Weekly Trust that Yuguda had not only betrayed them by defecting to the PDP but has tarnished his image after his plot to oust his deputy was exposed. He said the majority of the people are only waiting for 2011 to avenge what the governor did to them. He asked those who are bent on bringing confusion in the state to desist from doing so as, according to him, the state was bigger than any individual.
“We do not support what the governor is said to be plotting because we do not believe the deputy governor has done anything wrong by remaining in the party that brought him to power. We heard that the PDP planned to rig the 2011 election. We will wait and see, but I assure you that we will still employ the same formula of A KASA A TSARE in 2011 so that we will defeat the PDP. Let those who are trying to bring confusion into this state desist from doing so. This state is bigger than any individual, no matter how highly placed.”
A 40-year-old carpenter resident of Gwallaga, Dalha Muhammad, told Weekly Trust that the governor has committed political suicide by decamping to the PDP and now plotting to have his deputy, whom he said is highly respected in the state, impeached. He said he does not support the deputy governor’s impeachment and would prefer that the PDP allows him to complete his four-year tenure.
“I still can’t believe Malam has ditched the party that brought him to power. I think he has killed his political career in Bauchi. He has disappointed many of his supporters, especially the poor who rallied round him when the PDP disgraced him. Why are they in a hurry to oust the deputy? What is wrong in allowing the man to complete his mandate?”
A member of the now ruling PDP in the state who didn’t want to be named also faulted the governor’s move to have his deputy impeached, saying it does not augur well for the political career of the governor and the future of the PDP in the state. “As a member of the PDP, I was elated when the governor returned to our party but I am not happy when I learned that he is plotting to oust his deputy at all cost. As a seasoned politician, I believe it is wrong because there is still time to do away with him. He cannot expect to return as the deputy governor of Malam Isa in 2011 when he knows he is in a different party. I think the governor should have allowed him to whittle out on his own.”
The PDP chieftain said as it is now, the chances of PDP winning future elections in Bauchi is dim. “Our people have tasted the sweetness of independence. They know that if they voted and protected their votes, they will have their way and that is my fear for the PDP in 2011.”
A cross section of people spoken to prayed that the deputy governor would triumph over the injustices being meted out to him.