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Gov Shinkafi: From strategy to supremacy

The recent mass decamping of the state and federal legislators from the ANPP into the PDP has further demonstrated the high impact of Governor Shinkafi’s…

The recent mass decamping of the state and federal legislators from the ANPP into the PDP has further demonstrated the high impact of Governor Shinkafi’s cool, calculating mind on the hitherto dull and desolate political landscape of a Zamfara State that seemed to be mesmerized into the Yarima personality-cult style of politics for so long. The decamping of state and federal legislators was believed to be impossible, even suicidal, by the opposition comprising “old PDP” renegades and the dwindling ranks of Yarima’s followers, considering the constitutional constraints to such a move requiring them to relinquish their seats. The supposedly impossible initiative of the state and federal legislators in Zamfara to join their governor in the PDP is today viewed by analysts as the last nail in the coffin of Yarima/ANPP politics in Zamfara State and a huge morale booster for the PDP’s mass of supporters across the state.

 With new elections just about eight months away, there is simply no time or political value in activating the constitutional constraints against the decamping legislators. The reality of Governor Shinkafi’s master stroke is now all too obvious.

The serial successes of the political mass movement in Zamfara State continues to baffle many political observers whose attention is largely on the laidback demeanour adopted by Governor Shinkafi even as he comes up with well-timed political tsunamis that demoralize the opposition but boost the stature of the new PDP under his watch. The fact is there are two sides to the coin of the new era in Zamfara politics whose combined effect is simply too formidable to be countered. The political leadership is unquestionably and firmly under the master-mind of Governor Shinkafi as he has demonstrated in his unique and unassuming but highly effective approach. This is further confirmed by the absence of any rancour or crisis within the inner caucus of his leadership structure, despite the very complicated strategies being deployed.

But rarely do you see or hear Governor Shinkafi while all the high-wire politicking is going on. He only appears to crown the successes with his crowd-pulling presence at the climax of the strategy. The other side of the coin has to do with the translation of strategy into supremacy on ground and this is believed to be the domain of the duo of Ibrahim Mallaha and Musa Zubairu, chairman and secretary of the PDP in Zamfara State respectively and their chains of state-wide support groups and associations firmly dedicated to the movement. On this there is hardly any doubt, especially when you recall those heady days of convincing the masses about the positive rationale for abandoning the sinking ship of the ANPP and the futuristic wisdom of embracing the mainstream of national politics under the ruling PDP. When this was eventually accomplished there was the stubborn intransigence of the mandarins of the old PDP who just could not come to terms with a new dispensation in the PDP in Zamfara State without they calling the shots.

It is to the credit of the “engineers” of the movement led by Musa Zubairu and Ibrahim Mallaha that they were not distracted by the brick-bats thrown at them as they forged ahead in ensuring that political strategy is successfully converted to political supremacy in Zamfara State. Their remarkable achievement has been linked to their down-to-earth perception of politics which enabled them to diplomatically win over the cream of political leaders and respected personalities that matter in Zamfara politics while also carrying the masses along.

There is every reason to be optimistic that Governor Shinkafi’s second term will produce a befitting climax to his selfless pioneering role as the initiator of the qualitative shift in the concept of political leadership in Zamfara State, from one-man show to people-oriented development politics. It was inevitable that such political transformation will have to be carried out if the people of the state are to be integrated into the mainstream of national politics and development. Governor Shinkafi’s focus in his second term must therefore be economic transformation to liberate the people from poverty. That will be the ultimate political masterstroke!  

 Kaura is a youth leader in Gusau  

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