A disturbing threat to Nigeria’s peace and security, federalism and growing democracy is an ugly trend where occupants of highly influential elected or appointed positions use them to ferment trouble in their home states.
Instead of using their positions to extend dividends of democracy to their various states of extraction, they do the opposite and export trouble, confusion, crisis etc to their home states.
In this context, peace and security, federalism and democracy are thwarted.
When there is trouble and confusion, peace and security breaks down, when the federal actors try to lord it over to the states actors in a federal structure where the centre and the states ought to be independent, federalism is threatened and where the federal and states actors are fighting, dividends of democracy are hardly extended.
The most worrisome aspect of the crisis is that federal actors sabotage federal presence in their home states so that the governors will not take the credit and vice versa.
Just recently, Governor Emmanuel Odom of Akwa Ibom State cautioned indigenes of the state occupying influential federal positions against making inciting and inflammatory statements that could lead the state in flames and threatened to unleash the youth on such belligerent federal politicians.
Of course, mischief makers misinterpreted the Governor’s action to mean a declaration of political war on President Muhammadu Buhari.
In the past one year, Bauchi State has been a theatre of political war between Governor Mohammad Abdullahi Abubakar of the State on one hand and the Speaker Federal House of Representatives Rt. Hon Yakubu Dogara who hails from the state on the other hand.
This political friction has negative implications on the development of the state which informed the Governor’s declaration of cease fire and extension of olive branch to Dogara and his cohorts for peace and tranquility to reign supreme in the state.
Bauchi state has been isolated for analysis because that is the only state where an occupant between numbers 1-6 in the list of federal protocol is fighting his state governor.
Yakubu Dogara is number four citizen in the country and he is the only person among the occupants of the top federal protocol list fighting with his home governor.
This case study involving a federal heavy weight will enable us understand the implications of the clash between centripetal and centrifugal political forces and will build-up the body of political knowledge that will help to resolve the trend.
Since the advent of the current democratic experience in 1999, there has always been regular story of political siege laid on Governors of the state by indigenes of the states occupying exalted federal positions.
During the Fourth Republic, former Governor Sam Egwu of Ebonyi State and former President of the Senate Anyim Pius Anyim who hails from Ebonyi fought themselves to finish to the extent that Egwu’s camp brought a coffin and named it Anyim’s coffin and went round the streets of Abakaliki the state’s headquarters with it.
During late President Umar Yar’Adua’s tenure, former Governor Danjuma Goje of Gombe State begged his fellow Governors to beg late President Yar’Adua to replace Umar Modibbo from Gombe State who was the FCT minister because the minister was using the juicy position to fight his Governor.
Immediate past minister of FCT, Bala Mohammed used the same position to prosecute a cold war with his home state former Governor of Bauchi state, Isa Yuguda.
During the peak of PDPs reign in the country, no PDP Governor was comfortable with the party producing the National Chairman from his state because that was always a recipe for political disaster and invitation to anarchy and chaos.
Presently, Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna state is fighting serious political war with Senator Shehu Sani representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District backed by external political forces.
In the instant case of Bauchi state involving Governor Mohammed Abubakar and Speaker Yakubu Dogara, I think the speaker should embrace the Governor’s peace initiatives so that the dividends of democracy can be fully consummated in the state.
It is senseless, needless and ungodly political war for the Speaker to hold on to fight simply because the Governor was on the same page with APC national leadership on the zoning of NASS leadership positions which Dogara rebelled against and won.
It is not the state Governor that gives power but God and such that sustenance of the political war between the two gladiators is ungodly.
Moreover, the Governor did nothing personally to oppose Dogara’s emergence as the Speaker.
There should be a well-developed dynamic and mature mind to overlook the past and move on with the present.
The State House of Assembly has had a fair share of the crisis.
The House had been infiltrated and distracted enough and should be left alone to independently execute its mandate.
The previous attempt to manipulate the State House of Assembly to remove the Governor failed, which is a lesson against such mischief.
The use of inflammatory language between the warring Governor’s and Speaker’s camp is very dangerous because the state is very volatile which has just emerged from many years of terrorist attacks.
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