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Adamawa Governorship Race And The X-Men by Mohammed Zayyad


  Adamawa Governorship Race and the X-Men

 The scenarios in the final lap of the race to Government House Yola can best be likened to the American book series- the X-factor. All charaters featured in the X-Factor are spin-off  of the popular five X-Men: Angel, a millionaire heir who flew by means of two feathery wings extending from his back. Beast, who possessed ape-like strength and agility. Cyclops who emitted powerful "optic blasts" from his eyes and  was the leader of  the X-Men. Jean Grey who possessed telepathic and telekinetic powers, and Iceman, who could generate ice and cover his body in a layer of ice for protection. The X-Men  recruited a group of young wards: Artie, a pink-skinned, mute child who could project hologram-like images of his thoughts. Boom Boom who could  create  "plasma bombs", Rusty Collins, who could create and control fire , Leech a green-skinned young boy, who dampened the mutant powers of those around him, Rictor, who produced powerful shockwaves, and Skids who projected a protective force field around. In a  real life situation, no One can win a battle against the X-Men.  However, former Adamawa State Governor, Murtala Nyako,  has found himself in catch-22 situation similar to that of facing the X-Men in a battlefield.

 Nyako found himself in the difficult situation for quite some reasons: The battle for Adamawa Governorship seat will not be between Action Congress (AC) and the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), but rather between one small clique and a colossal of different political interest groups. There are serious internal squabbles in Adamawa State chapter of the PDP. This is due to the sidelining of some notable party members; it all started when other nine governorship aspirants were disqualified and Nyako was imposed as the party candidate. The structure of Adamawa PDP can best be describe as a kith and kin thing- the state party chairman, Mijinyawa Kugama is Nyako’s neighbour at their village, the party chairman in Mayo Belwa- Nyako’s Local Government Area, Yusuf Hamman Yaro, is Nyako’s blood brother. These, including the fear that the small clique would loss their grab on the party’s structures are the reasons why no PDP congresses were held in Adamawa, despite the fact that the tenure of the party executives has ended. Though, recently a Federal High Court in Yola has ordered the party executive to stop parading themselves as leaders of the party in Adamawa state.

 Second on the list of odds against Nyako was his fight against the traditional institution; their monthly allocation was drastically reduced. One of the most amazing things that happened during Nyako’s nine months stay as Governor was the issuance of a query to Ganwarin Ganye, a highly respected first class traditional ruler, the reason for the query was for some ridiculous political reasons, not worth mentioning.

 Another factor that would be an impediment to Nyako’s comeback bid is; his government was hijacked by third-rate politicians, who painted it with monumental corruption, nepotism, arrogance and absolute disregards to the cultural complexities of Adamawa State- in short, Nyako’s nine months tenure was characterised by ‘we’ and ‘they’ impression.


 A big burden to Adamawa PDP and to Nyako is Senator Jibrin Aminu. The Senator is well-read, but highly controversial and chauvinist. His ways of doing things at all times are in contrast to the characters of leaders that are just, and his politics are at poles-apart with the wishes of all Adamawa people. Though, the senator’s proclivity to controversies is no more news, it is his nature. One can recall that, he boldly wrote on his office desk, ‘DO IT MY WAY’ during his controversy-ridden tenure as Vice Chancellor of University of Maiduguri.

 With these heaps of impediments against Murtala Nyako’s comeback bid, the man has centred all his hope on the expectation that President Yar’Adua will use the instruments of the State to install him as Governor, as it was done in the 2007 elections. But would President Yar’Adua enthusiastically interfere? The most interesting part of Adamawa Governorship race is, the end-game would involve high wired-politics, scheming, settling of old scores, and outright deception. It would be to political gladiators a weapon for future political negotiations and response to several accusations.

 Going back to the earlier question whether President Yar’Adua will interfere or not; Yar’Adua has three options: first not to interfere, to allow for free and fair elections so as to score a political point both nationally and internationally. Secondly is to interfere to settle an old political score with Senator Jibrin Aminu – Senator Aminu had on several occasions betrayed late General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua; from his walked-away on the General at their Katsina meeting, to his backstabbing of the General during the Abacha organised constitutional conference; which led to the arrest of the General and to his eventual death.

 The third option Yar’Adua has is to play ‘politics’ with Adamawa governorship elections, so as to use it as an instrument for negotiation with Atiku and also as a weapon in responding to AC, especially at the Supreme Court. This is the end-game Prof. Maurice Iwu will love most – the man would for certain say ‘Now I supervised an election and you won, why not accept the previous one I did supervised ’.

 As the April 12, 2008 Adamawa governorship election draws near, former Gov. Murtala will continue to have sleepless night, as the odds against him are enormous and high-wired politics will be part of the determinant factors of the election results, though the Adamawa people will have the final say.

 By: Mohammed Zayyadh

Zayyad I. Muhammad writes from Jimeta, Adamawa state


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