—-Says he won’t succumb to external influence by Kwankwaso
—As Gov Abubarka insists on state police
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
ABUJA – GOVERNOR Abdulahi Umar Ganduje of Kano State yesterday said that the alleged under age voting in the just concluded local government elections in the state was a mere propaganda that doesn’t have any substance.
The Kano State Governor also said that the problem between him and his predecessor, Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso was his resistance against external manipulation.
This is as the Bauchi State Governor, Muhammed Abubarkar has said that if the country should practice federalism as enshrined in the nation’s constitution, it has to adopt state police to curb its security challenges.
The two governors spoke to State House correspondents on the sideline of the high table dialogue on ethical values and national security organised by presidency at the Old Banquet Hall, Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Fielding question from journalists, Governor Ganduje said that allegation of under age voting in the just concluded election in the state and the images of the kids that had gone viral on social media was not true, adding that the election had been certified as credible, free and fair by national observers.
He said, “That was propaganda. You can ask the National observers who went there, they held a press conference, all those pictures were children from school assembly. It is not true, it is part of the propaganda. Let them go back to the state and ask the people did they queue up and vote in the election?
“So, we don’t even need to respond to such falsehood. Ask those who are credible and who witnessed the election, I think that is the most important rather than rely on the social media where things are crafted, and take pictures that were prearranged. We don’t rely on that
Ganduje who has been having running battle with his predecessor, Senator Kwankwaso claimed that it was the attempt by somebody who had left office to decide what happened in the state was responsible for the face off between the two.
In apparent allusion that he is in charge of affairs of the state, he said, “Well, we conducted local government elections precisely on Saturday 10th February and it was very peaceful. Independent observers were there, the result was a 100 per cent APC.
“The election is free and fair. So you can see that the insecurity was publicized outside Kano. People believe here that there is insecurity but in Kano, there is peace and stability.
“A month ago, we had inter faith dialogue between the Christians and Muslims and the Ulamas and the clergymen were all there. We had a resolution pertaining to the peace and stability in the state.
“And since I came into office, there has not been any outbreak of instability in the state, nobody has been killed, nobody has been injured as a result of political activities.
“So you can see that the propaganda outside the state is that there is insecurity in the state, practically we have been showing that it is false.”
On his relationship with Kwankwaso, he said, “Well, as you know we were very good friends. In fact my politics cannot be complete without Kwankwaso and the history of Kwankwaso politics cannot be complete without me.
“But somewhere somehow things went wrong. But we believe in politics, you will get to a point you cannot rule and manage a state and then you are being controlled from outside, you know that one is very very difficult to happen if you look at the psychology of leaders.”
State police engenders true federalism
Also speaking to journalists, the Bauchi State Governor, Abubarkar explained why he supported the idea of state police, saying that it engenders true federalism.
He said, “Well, the nation is a federation. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria provides for a federal system and in federal system, the federating units are all independent in their own sphere of influence.
“We copied the Constitution from the American Constitution and if you go to America you discover that there is County Police, there is State Police and then Federal Police.
“If we are going to engender true federalism, that is probably the beginning.”
On the fears that state governors might abuse state police if eventually it was established the governor said there will always be fears when a new policy was to be put in place.
He said, “There will always be fears but we should not think in terms of individuals in Nigeria, that is our bane, we should think in terms of developing institutions. When we develop institutions and the plain truth, they take care of the indiscretions of individuals.”
On the reason behind the meeting at the State House, he said, “We came for a dialogue on ethics and integrity of service and the launching of a compendium on the life and times of Mr. President and the service he has rendered to the nation, from the time he joined the army to date.
“This compendium was conceived well before the consideration for 2019 elections. It is a factual compendium not politics. The dialogue is the first thing in addressing the problems of the nation, the need for us to forge unity, to consider the challenges affecting the nation without unnecessarily overheating the nation.”