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Gov Shema foils launch of Jonathan campaign office in Katsina

Our correspondent reports, however, that as early as 6:00am on Saturday, the day of the event, hundreds of armed policemen were seen drafted in all…

Our correspondent reports, however, that as early as 6:00am on Saturday, the day of the event, hundreds of armed policemen were seen drafted in all the roads leading to the venue of the occasion, preventing people from reaching there.

Also, all routes leading to the state capital were blocked by the police who were seen busy turning back thousands of people going to the event from the 34 local governments of the state in various buses. The state Commissioner of Police, Mr Sabo Ibrahim Ringim, while confirming the development to newsmen on the phone, said the event had to be halted for security reasons.

He said the organisers of the event did not follow a proper channel in communicating the event to the relevant agencies saying, the state governor, who is the chief security officer of the state had not been duly notified of the event.

However, in a response, the state coordinator of the group, Alhaji Aminu Ibrahim Kurabau, who expressed surprise at the turn of events, debunked the claim and said the group wrote to all the relevant stakeholders, including the state governor, before going ahead with the event.

Kurabua brandished a letter of notification dated August 18 2010, which was written to the state governor, duly received by Government House and minuted by the PS same day. Part of the letter even commended the governor for the support and encouragement he was giving to the initiative.

An investigation conducted by Sunday Trust revealed that the feud may not be unconnected with a supremacy fight between supporters of the state governor and the parallel group, believed to be behind the rally.

The State’s Coordinator of the Jonathan Support Group, Abdullahi Garba Garus, in an interview with newsmen in Katsina, said their group was opposed to the occasion because a recent meeting had directed all Jonathan’s men to fuse and work under their umbrella.

The development has already caused many controversies in the state. Governor Shema initially counted among the 11 governors that voted for zoning. Already, some prominent politicians close to the governor, such as Lawal Kaita, have voiced out their 18 strong opposition to Jonathan’s ambition in 2011.

But, one of the organisers of the rally, Abdulkadir Musa, said the governor was only panicking due to the membership of some politicians with a strong following their in group. He said the governor felt the continuation of the rally would provide a platform for such politicians. However, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Public Relations, Nasiru Abdul, dismissed it as an untrue insinuation and said the governor did not feel threatened by anybody because his works would always separate him from the other politicians.

He said the government was not even aware that the rally was stopped because it was the responsibility of security agencies and not that of the state government.

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