• Says he parted with Kwankwaso because he wanted to control him from outside
•Denies underage voting in LG elections
Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja with agency report
Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, has promised that his state will give President Muhammadu Buhari five million votes if he contests the 2019 election.
Speaking at the swearing-in of 44 new local government area chairmen and 484 councillors last Monday night, Ganduje said the victory recorded by the All Progressives Congress (APC) at the local government polls showed that the “party is Kano.”
“The overall number of votes scored by the APC candidates is more than what President Buhari scored in 2015 general election, that is to say if eventually he agreed to contest the 2019 general election, I assured you, we will give you five million votes.
“We have seen in this election as a clear indication that Kano is APC and ready to contribute to its success any time,” he said.
The governor, according to The Cable, warned the newly elected public officers against mismanagement of funds.
He said anyone caught would “pay the price.”
Ganduje also said the 2018 local government budget had been approved by the state House of Assembly.
“You will be given free hands to operate in your respective council, but whoever sidesteps his bound will pay a price,” he said.
In the 2015 election, Buhari got 1.9 million votes from Kano.
Meanwhile, Ganduje yesterday in Abuja broke his silence on the stand-off between him and his predecessor and benefactor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, saying the latter embarked on a difficult task by attempting to dictate to him.
Ganduje who made this disclosure while answering questions from journalists at the State House after the presentation of a compendium on the life and times of President Buhari, said both of them were inseparable in politics but the line was drawn when Kwankwaso wanted to keep calling the shots outside the Government House, a trend he said was unacceptable.
“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 difficult to happen if you look at the psychology of leaders,” he stated.
Ganduje who also denied the allegation of underage voting at last Saturday’s local council polls in Kano, whose photographs went viral on social media, claimed that it was sheer falsehood, insisting that the polls were free and fair.
“That was propaganda. You can ask the national observers who went there. They held a press conference. Those pictures were children from school assembly. It is not true. It is part of the propaganda. Let them go back to the states and ask the people, if 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 most important, rather than rely on the social media where things are crafted, and pictures are prearranged. We don’t rely on that.
“Well, we conducted local government elections precisely on Saturday, February 10 and it was very peaceful. Independent observers were there. The result was 100 per cent APC. The elections were free and fair. So, you can see that insecurity was publicised outside Kano. People believe here that there is insecurity but in Kano, there is peace and stability,” he added.
The governor also said there had been peace and security in the state, explaining that both Christians and Muslims recently met and resolved to live in harmony in the state.
“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,” he added.
Also speaking, Bauchi State Governor, Mohammed Abubakar, said the path of state police is the way to go, explaining that doing so will promote federalism.
“Well, the country 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 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.
“I do not think so. 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,” he stated.