By Ishola Michael – Bauchi
Bauchi State Governor, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar who is seeking reelection for a second term has been advised to toe the path of honour and concede defeat as was done to him in 2015 when he was elected by defeating the candidate of the then incumbent Governor, Isa Yuguda.
This was the reaction of residents of the state immediately the results of the just concluded supplementary elections in the state were announced which indicated that Abubakar lost to PDP calling on him to leave honourably like was done by former President Goodluck Jonathan in the 2015 presidential election.
Many of those who had expected that the winner of the March 9 governorship election would be announced by the Returning Officer, Prof Kyari Mohammed on Sunday were disappointed as they have to wait for another day until the court judgment on Monday to decide whether the results of Tafawa Balewa LGA would be re-collated and its result announced to declare a winner or a rerun will be carried out in the area to determine the eventual winner.
Those who spoke with our correspondent in the state capital on Sunday expressed their displeasure with the decision of the APC and its candidate, Mohammed Abubakar to go to court saying that clearly he was losing and the judiciary cannot save him as the people have decided on who to be their next Governor.
As soon as the results were announced, some PDP supporters were seen dancing and singing near the INEC office to celebrate results of the 19 out of 20 local governments so far announced saying that the days of the APC led administration under Mohammed Abubakar in the state was over.
Baba Sule, one of the PDP youth leaders in the state said that: “Governor Abubakar is only delaying the evil days. Whether he likes it or not, he is gone.
How can a sitting Governor allow himself to be defeated? Mohammed Abubakar had the chances but failed to utilise them. It is a price of arrogance,” a resident of Tirwun, who was at the INEC office but declined to mention his name said.
Although a winner is yet to be declared by INEC as all stakeholders await the pronouncement of an Abuja Federal High Court tomorrow, several residents have reacted just as Adamu Usman, a resident of Railway, Sabon Kasuwa in Bauchi Metropolis, and a member of the Nigerian Union of Road Transport Workers, Bauchi-Tirwum, said: “To me there is no need for a rerun in the Tafawa Balewa LGA, the results should just be announced and whosoever wins should be allowed because more money will be spent and time will be wasted. It is God that gives power, what we need in the state is peace.”
Illiya Mohammed, from Misau town, a commercial driver, said: “To me, INEC should be allowed to declare the winner because we are tired of the APC government. We have suffered under them. My parents are pensioners and they suffered. Some have paralysed while waiting for their entitlements so we want them out. APC should accept defeat and spare us all these pains. They have been defeated twice so even if we do a rerun again they will be defeated because clearly, Tafawa Balewa LGA is not their stronghold.”
Some officials serving in the APC led government have also vent their frustrations with the Governor’s sit tight tactics saying that enough is enough as the writing is on the wall that their time is up.
One of them who pleaded anonymity said: “We have been advising His Excellency to toe the path of honour and concede defeat but he has refused. The people of Bauchi State are just suffering over his procrastination. He should take the step that former President Goodluck Jonathan took by conceding defeat because if he refused he would suffer more humiliation. Already, his Commissioner of Finance has resigned and five more will leave any moment from now.”
On Sunday, the mood among several PDP supporters was that of jubilation and confidence of victory for their candidate, Senator Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir.
There are concerns that all the giant billboards of Governor Mohammed Abubakar in parts of the state capital which would have cost millions of Naira, would be removed by some youths to express their displeasure with what they alleged is the Governor’s time buying.