Segun Awofadeji in Bauchi
The outgoing Governor of Bauchi State, Mohammed Abubakar, has disclosed that his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), has assembled four Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) to challenge his electoral defeat in court.
Abubakar, who returned to the state after spending over one week in Abuja lobbying and making consultations in the presidency and the national leadership of the APC, made a U-turn from his earlier decision to concede defeat, saying his party has agreed to go to court to reclaim his mandate from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The embattled governor, in a video that has gone viral which was obtained by THISDAY, disclosed this while addressing his supporters at his campaign office in Bauchi last Wednesday evening shortly after returning to the state.
The state Commissioner for Information, Ibrahim Sade, confirmed the authenticity of the video to THISDAY in an interview yesterday.
The governor, who said he had earlier accepted his defeat as his ‘destiny’, disclosed that he met with President Muhammadu Buhari and the leadership of the party which informed him that they would file a suit soon to challenge the election.
According to him, “The reason for my going to Abuja, in my capacity as a loyal and obedient party member, was to meet with the national chairman of the APC, vice president and the president.
“Just like I have said, I am an obedient member of the national body of the party, and it was because of this that the APC will file a suit in court to challenge the results of Bauchi State elections.
“As an obedient member, I accept to go with that decision. Everyone knows that when the results of the election were announced, I conceded defeat but I contested on the ticket of the party and the party has refused to accept the outcome of the election.”
Abubakar added that it was because of that development that he was addressing his supporters to inform them that “the party has concluded plans, and has hired four SANs to file this suit in court in a short while.”
He said he was telling them of the party’s decision so as to “motivate” them because “there is no way injustice will stand, as that will never happen. Everybody knows that there was injustice in the election that took place in the state.”
The outgoing governor alleged that from the time the PDP candidate was announced as the winner of the election, ‘Sara Suka’ (political thuggery) has been on the increase.
“But I want to assure you that from now to May 29, I am still the governor of the state, and by the grace of God, I will not fold my hands and allow this violent treatment of the people to continue. I will convene a special security meeting to particularly address and find a lasting solution to this thuggery that is being planned to be brought back to the state,” he vowed.
In his reaction, the state PDP Chairman, Hamza Koshe Akuyam, said the decision of the APC to go to court is a welcome development.
Akuyam said it is the constitutional right of the governor to go to court to seek redress, declaring that “we are ready to meet them in court. The court will reaffirm our victory.”
He noted that the court does not give anybody victory, “but it is the people that give victory and they have given us the victory.”
On the allegation by the governor that the victory of the PDP has caused a resurgence of thuggery in the state, Akuyam said if there is any breakdown of law and order in the state, he (the governor) is to be held responsible.
The PDP chairman said: “We know his antics; he is a wounded lion who is out to make a lot of noise and arrest people. We will not succumb to his propaganda.”