How APC wrecked Jibrin’s career in National Assembly
All Progressives Congress’s (APC) Abdulmumin Jibrin lost the struggle to reclaim his Kiru/Bebeji Federal Constituency plum seat to the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate, Aliyu Detti Yako at rerun election last Saturday. The Kaduna division of Court of Appeal had on November 2019 sacked Jibrin for failure to secure lawful votes and ordered fresh election in 90 days. The appellate court also faulted Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for declaring APC candidate winner of the constituency election.
The upper court dismissed the declaration of Kano National Assembly election petition tribunal, led by Justice Nayal Aganaba, which earlier upheld INEC’s position, insisting elections in Tudun wada, Bebeji areas were characterised by violence and irregularities.
During the last election, the former chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation scored 13,507 votes against 48,601 votes polled by PDP’s candidate to signal the end of his tenure in the National Assembly. Although the rerun couldn’t have posted any easy ride for Jibrin considering the quantum of votes deposited in Kiru constituency, the stronghold of the PDP’s candidate .
For instance, Kiru has 246 out of the 407 total polling units as well as 123,703 registered voters against Jibrin’s area, which has 76,740 voters. Beyond the game of numbers, Jibrin would ordinarily have maneuvered through, at least with the internal machinery of the ruling party. But the woeful loss of Jibrin to PDP from emerging feelers was the fallout of intrigues that played out against him in his party.
Ordinarily, the Supreme Court judgment in favour of Governor Abdullah Umar Ganduje should have positively rubbed off on the chances of Jibrin returning to the lower chamber. But Jibrin has alleged a gang up against him by the top echelon of APC to ensure he lost the seat. One of Jibrin’s associates, Aminu Aliyu, told our correspondent how the ruling party deployed state machinery to prevail on party members to vote for PDP’s candidate against Jibrin.
“We were all here and saw how some commissioners and the party chairman stood firm in all our polling units in Bebeji to make sure no APC member in our constituency voted for the APC candidate,” Aliyu said. “You can imagine such a conspiracy. They deployed heavy security men on election day to our constituency just to intimidate our loyal members who stood firm with Jibrin and rejected their bidding. It is disappointing and most unfortunate that this can happen in a progressive party.”
But in a swift reaction, state secretary to APC in Kano, Zakari Sarina, denied the allegation, insisting that Jibrin’s loss was as a result of his declining popularity and lack of value in the grassroots politics in Kano. He said APC was left with no choice, despite all inconveniences, to rectify the candidature of Jibrin. He insisted that the party regretted losing the seat to the opposition.
“Yes, Jibrin is facing several petitions and sanctions due to his attitude but the party has no choice than to allow him to contest the election,” Sarina stated. “It is sad he finally lost, which shows he has lost touch with the people in his constituency”.
Jibrin might have reaped the consequences of his incessant rebellious acts against the party’s leadership with his alleged anti-party activities, especially with his erstwhile godfather in the PDP. Jibrin’s crime started when he tweeted a controversial comment during the heat of March general election, urging Ganduje to accept defeat even as INEC declared the election inconclusive.
In the comment via his Twitter handle, Jibrin had said: “Events of the last few hours in Kano is (sic) embarrassing, shameful, and condemnable. As leaders, we must act responsibly and allow the process to be peacefully concluded in the interest of our state and people. Every contest has a winner and loser. The winner must be handed victory.”
Jibrin’s tweet did not only earn him unwholesome tongue-lashing from stout apologists of Ganduje, the party leadership had since then threatened to kick him from the seat. He had since fallen apart with the party’s chairman, Abdullahi Abba, when he vowed to expose the anti-party secrets of Abba just as he insisted the party’s leadership belonged to the governor and not the chairman. Abba had cautioned Jibrin to avoid dismissal from the party.
Jibrin’s arrogant attitude to the party’s leadership, however, changed when he was recently captured in a video clip kneeling down to receive Abba, in a desperate move to rewrite his dented name from the man he once disparaged. Jibrin equally crossed the party line in his constituency when he retrieved about 40 vehicles bought for the party’s members for President Muhammadu Buhari’s presidential campaign.
Against the tradition, Jibrin stripped party loyalists of the campaign vehicles, which normally were compensation for the hardworking members after the victory of the party.“He has abused the party’s chairman Abdullahi Abbas, who accused him of anti-party and set up committee to investigate him,” Yakubu Isyaku, an APC stalwart noted. “He dared the leadership of the party, which he claimed cannot do anything to him. He collected campaign cars given to members.
“Everywhere, such cars are given out as compensation to members but Jibrin collected the cars. I don’t think party members will forgive him”.But Jibrin had of late been repentant, determined to regain Ganduje’s favour at the poll. Besides, Jibrin’s recent visit to President Muhammadu Buhari at the villa, a reliable source told The Guardian, was another strategic mission to break all hurdles against him.
Although Jibrin told journalists at the state house that everything was well with him and Governor Ganduje, sources disclosed that Jibrin was at the villa to seek help from the powerful “Buhari’s cabal” to prevail on Ganduje. But the cabals at the presidency could not save Jibrin from imminent failure.
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