CANDIDATE of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in today’s Bauchi South senatorial bye-election, Lawal Yahaya Gumau, has declared that his only interest in wanting to go to the Senate is to join other like minds in the Senate to make President Muhammadu Buhari life president of Nigeria.
He boasted that he would influence other senators to ensure a constitutional amendment that would enable Buhari rule Nigeria for life.
Yahaya Gumau made the declaration on Thursday evening at the premises of the Multipurpose Indoor Sports Hall, Bauchi, venue of the closing of the campaign of the party ahead of today’s bye-election, which was attended by five APC state governors led by Abdulazeez Yari of Zamfara State.
The APC candidate, who is currently the member of the House of Representatives representing Toro Federal Constituency, stated that in his eight years in the House, he had delivered on his mandate to his people.
“I, Lawal Yahaya Gumau, want you to know that the mandate that will be given to me on Saturday is to go and protect President Muhammadu Buhari’s interest in the Senate.
“This is the only mandate that I will be going to the Senate with. Every other mandate, you know I have fulfilled it already in the House of Representatives, where I have been for eight years. Everything that ought to be done for the masses, I have done to the best of my ability. What is now needed in Nigeria is to protect Buhari’s interest and that is what we will do,” he boasted.
The APC candidate declared that members of the National Assembly would amend Nigeria’s constitution to allow Buhari lead for the rest of his life and said that even though former President Olusegun Obasanjo tried and failed, the people should be assured that they would succeed to actualise the dream.
“Obasanjo tried all his best with mind-blowing money that he used for the constitution to be amended to allow him go for a third term but God didn’t approve of it because of its lack of sincerity. But by God’s grace, we will amend Nigeria’s constitution to allow Buhari be president for the remaining years of his life. He will only cease to be president when God takes his life,” he further boasted.
Also speaking, the chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum and governor of Zamfara State, Abdul Azeez Yari, who led three other governors to the final campaign, said they were in the state on the mandate of Acting President Yemi Osinbajo.
The governors in the delegation were those of Plateau, Simon Lalong; Kebbi, Atiku Bagudu; Jigawa, Badaru Abubabakar and the host, Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi State.
Yari said it would be a very shameful thing for President Buhari to endorse a candidate for an election and he loses.
“Our message is simple, the Acting President (Yemi Osinbajo) is seriously worried about what is going on in Bauchi State. He told us to tell you that it would be a shameful and disgraceful thing to us in the northern part of Nigeria, with all the love being shown to Buhari in Bauchi State, for him (Buhari) to raise the hand of someone (Gumau) and endorse him, and he loses that election,” he said.
According to the NGF chairman, President Buhari is being tested by the bye-election, stressing that, “God is only testing Buhari because of his desire to bring about change to the country, and by His grace, he will pass that test.”
Meanwhile, the state chairman of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), one of the political parties contesting the bye-election, Mr Barde Mohammed, has alleged plans by the state government and the ruling APC to rig the exercise.
Mohammed, who made the allegation on Friday while speaking at the opening ceremony of the Bauchi Local Government Area office of the party, claimed that part of the plan was the invitation of APC governors from five states to Bauchi to team up with the state government to rig the election in favour of the APC candidate.
He further alleged that doing this was evidence that the state government was about to play with the collective intelligence of the people of the state and Bauchi South in particular to rig the election.
Mohammed boasted that anyone that saw the crowd of the NNPP supporters would know that the NNPP was a party to beat in the state and it had all it takes to wrest power from the APC.
He commended the party’s supporters for the orderly manner in which they conduct themselves and urged them to be patient and law-abiding for the success of the bye-election.
Efforts to speak with the state Commissioner for Information, Umar Ibrahim Sade, failed, but a senior official in the ministry, who is a close political associate of Governor Abubakar, debunked the allegations.
Ibrahim Sade said the allegations were mere political gimmicks aimed at tarnishing the image of the government and the APC.
He reiterated the commitment of all APC supporters and the entire electorate in Bauchi South to voting for the APC candidate in the bye-election.
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