PAUL ORUDE, Bauchi
Bauchi State chapter of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has alleged that the state Government has threatened to dethrone any traditional ruler that fails to influence his subjects to vote for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) candidates in the elections.
The Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Yayanuwa Zainabari, made the allegation while addressing newsmen on Thursday in Bauchi.
Zainabari alleged that the government had issued an order to District Heads in some parts of the state to deliver their respective districts to the ruling party in the election.
He added that the issue triggered conflicts on Wednesday in Burra, Ningi Local Government Area between a district head and the people of the area.
The Publicity Secretary further said that the PDP was concerned about how the government allegedly humiliates the royal fathers and undermines their authority, describing the situation as unfortunate and pathetic.
“Even today, some District Heads were summoned from my local government to the Government House where they were intimidated. The governor should know that his tenure is limited. But traditional rulers will reign for as long as they live because the stool is hereditary and permanent”, he further alleged.
Zainabari also alleged that the government promised some of the traditional rulers it dethroned earlier when it came on board that if they delivered their various places to the APC, they would be reinstated.
He warned that: “The traditional rulers should know that we are also their sons and our governorship candidate Bala Mohammed has regard for them. He is worried about how they are being maltreated and will restore their lost glory if elected.”
The PDP publicity secretary also alleged that there was a plot by the state government to rig the elections in favour of the ruling party, vowing that the PDP was ready to checkmate plans for all electoral malpractices because according to him, “we are ready to defend our votes at all cost within the purview of the laws.”
He concluded that the PDP had already notified the security agencies and taken note of all the areas that the ruling APC was trying to manipulate the election results warning that the party would not fold its arms and watch things go bad and set the state on fire.
Responding in a telephone interview with our correspondent, the Special Adviser to Governor Mohammed Abubakar, Ali, Mohammed Ali, describe the allegation as ridiculous and showed that the PDP was already afraid of its imminent defeat.
“First, they said government has wasted N400 billion. They levelled all sorts of allegations from the ridiculous to the absolutely insane. At the rate they are going now, soon they will run out of excuses when they crash in the coming elections.
“The government is forcing traditional rulers? How? In fact, the state government has charged traditional rulers to stay away from politics. They should continue to be royal fathers, that any one of them involving himself in politics will only lose respect. The PDP by this allegation are clutching a straw. They are a sinking ship and they are looking for people who will drown with them. As far as we know, traditional rulers are not politicians. The fear of the PDP is that because their failure is imminent, they are try to identify those they will blame for their loss but the truth of the matter is that they have nothing to offer the people of Bauchi State, that is why.”