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Retired military officer, others in hot battle to unseat Doguwa

With barely two weeks to the commencement of the general polls, the race to unseat the current Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Alhassan…

With barely two weeks to the commencement of the general polls, the race to unseat the current Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Alhassan Ado-Doguwa, in the Doguwa/Tudun Wada federal constituency has intensified.

Doguwa, who was a member of the house in the defunct Third Republic, is seeking to return to the green chamber for a record seventh term. He returned to the parliament in the Fourth Republic and has been a member ever since.

However, Doguwa’s seventh term bid is being challenged by the retired military officer, Air Commodore Yusha’u Salisu, as well as a young legal practitioner and others who are battling to unseat him. 

Doguwa, the candidate of the APC and Air Commodore Salisu (rtd) of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), contested for the seat in the 2019 election, which the former won. 

UNICEF, Kashere varsity counter fake news

UNICEF, Kashere varsity counter fake news

Although the result was contested at the court and the Kaduna division of the Court of Appeal nullified Doguwa’s election and ordered a fresh poll, he won the rerun, polling 66,667 votes while Retired Air Commodore Salisu of the PDP got 6,323 votes. 

Determined to end Doguwa’s journey in the House of Representatives, the retired air force officer, again, joined the 2023 race on the platform of (NNPP). 

Another candidate eyeing the seat is Barrister Jamilu Dayyabu of the PDP. 

Dayyabu, a young lawyer, has been politically active in the constituency. He was instrumental in the PDP-APC court case in the 2019 general election. 

Though the young PDP candidate had no history of political appointment, he is so popular among the youths in the area.

He had contested for the state’s House of Assembly seat in 2019 to represent Doguwa state constituency but lost. 

Another candidate eying Doguwa/Tudunwada federal constituency seat is Auwal Basher Salihu who is contesting under the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP). 

Salihu is seen as a green horn in the constituency. But pundits said the election will be more of a popularity contest for him. 

Speakership ambition

Meanwhile, sources said Alhassan Ado Doguwa is nursing the idea of becoming the next Speaker of the House of the Representatives should he succeed in the general election.  

Doguwa was first elected as member of the parliament in 1992 immediately after his National Youth Service. 

He returned to the House of Representatives again in 2007 and was named the Deputy Chairman of the House Committee on Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). He was re-elected in 2011, 2015 and 2019. 

During the period, he chaired various committees, including African Network of Parliamentarians on MDGs.

He also served as the Chief Whip of the House. He campaigned vigorously for Femi Gbajabiamila to become the speaker in the 8th Assembly but lost to Yakubu Dogara. 

Fire on the mountain…?

Alhassan Doguwa recently expressed concerns on the prospects of his ruling APC in the general election. 

In November 2022, he said the party in the state had been going through silent crises, which would affect its chances in the 2023 election.

He said though Abdullahi Ganduje has governed the state well, those he handed over the party affairs to in the state were witch-hunted loyal members, forcing them to dump the party for others. 

“I want to say today without any fear of contraction; without any fear of intimidation from any quarter or any authority anywhere that there is fire on the mountain as far as the APC is concerned in Kano State. I repeat; there is fire on the mountain…!

“This is the right time to say it because we have been going through a silent crisis, especially in the area of party administration and politicking with a lot of intrigues and exclusion of members.

“Management and administration of the party is being done exclusively by a few members who are by all standing not supposed to handle what they are handling in the APC. I want to say for the purpose of clarification that I am talking about party politics in Kano; in our party, the APC,” he said.

Some observers said his recent feud with his party’s deputy governorship candidate, Murtala Garo, may work against him in the election. 

Also, Kano State, with over 1.8 million votes which is the highest number of voters in the 2019 presidential election, has recently witnessed mass defections between the three major political parties in the state APC, NNPP and PDP.

The contest promises to be tough especially between the ruling APC and NNPP.

The state NNPP party chairman, Umar Doguwa, is from the area. Also, the NNPP candidate, who contested for the same position in 2019 and performed well though he was defeated, will show a strong fight in the coming poll. 

Political watchers said both the retired air commodore and the incumbent lawmaker have almost equal chances of winning the seat. 

According to Abdulmajid Danbilki, APC has lost people’s confidence in the area due to recent happenings associated with the candidate’s behaviour and APC’s performance in previous dispensations speaks less of the party. 

He said though the APC candidate has been in the house for years, not much can be said or seen from his presence in the house.

He added that the 2023 election is not going to be business as usual because voters will go for personality and not party. 

“In Doguwa/Tudunwada, it is going to be desperation versus the people’s mandate; people will no longer go for political party affiliation. The expectation is that people will go for personal commitment to the area’s development,” he said.


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