By Ado Hassan, Sokoto
THE contest for governorship of Sokoto state within the All Progressives Congress(APC) is taking a twist with the state chapter of the party distancing it self from Senator Abubakar Gada, who it said is not a card carrying member of the party and alleged to have purchased nomination forms to contest governorship election on its platform.
According to the party, the said senator had never been a member of the party and could not ‘reap where he did not sow’.
In a statement issued by the party, Sunday, 16 September , the State Chairman of the party, Alhaji Isah Sadiq Achida, who referred to a publication in one of the dailies, that the Senator had purchased APC guber nomination forms from the party headquarters, maintained that Gada was never a card-carrying member of the party.
“The Sokoto State branch of the APC wishes to state categorically that as far as APC Sokoto is concerned, Senator Abubakar Gada is NOT a card carrying member of the APC. It is therefore a surprise that he has even gone as far as attempting to run for Governorship! Even if he carries any APC card, we doubt its authenticity and may have been fraudulently acquired, because it is nowhere in our records.
“The last we heard of him in Sokoto State politics, was in 2011 when he made a failed attempt to run for the Senate. He has never participated in any meetings or activities of the APC in Sokoto State, neither has he ever attended any Stakeholders meeting hosted by the Sokoto State Chapter of the APC.
“We are however aware that he is one of the several ‘absentee politicians’ in Abuja instigating trouble for our party against which the party is determined to deal with him,” the statement read.
However, Achida in the statement requested that the National secretariat of the party rejects the forms until Gada came to register with the party at his ward, adding that doing otherwise would amount to impunity.
“In view of the foregoing, I wish to request our National Headquarters to reject his gubernatorial contest forms and advise him to come home and register if he wishes to participate in APC affairs in Sokoto State.”
He said “ doing otherwise will amount to encouraging impunity, crowning injustice and refusal to appreciate the efforts of loyal party members at home who have been toiling and sacrificing for our success,” he added.
But Senator Gada who reacted through his media assistant, Mr Uche Nnaji, dismissed Achida’s response to his aspiration as panicky, cowardice and serious anti-party.
“To say the list, it is unfortunate.
“Any genuine APC stakeholder in the state must celebrate the party membership of Senator Abubakar Gada as a huge victory for the party in the face of mass defections of Governor Tambuwal and nearly the entire APC structures in sokoto state. There is no gain saying that the better half of APC (Tambuwal and his government) in Sokoto had since defected leaving behind only remnants, which Achida and his god father represent in the circumstances.
“For the avoidance of doubt, it is imperative at this point to note that there is no lawful state exco in Sokoto state today. A claim to having legally reconstituted state exco amount to self deception and illusions.
“As a result, having the Senator and his supporters coming at the time they did should be regarded as most timely.
“Having frustrated Governor Tambuwal out of the party by Achida’s god fathers cannot achieve similar result. So, be warned in earnest.
“For Distinguished Senator Gada and his like minds, they are in APC purposely to support President Buhari in his 2019 re-election and beyond. Therefore, those who choose to remain in the APC for fear of their past should in their own interest, lie low as such characters cannot stand the test of loyalty.
“As to whether Gada is an APC member presently is a question only for the weak-minded and therefore not worth any response.
“Suffice it to say however that genuine and progressive stakeholders of the APC in Sokoto state have since made their representations to the NWC and courts of competent jurisdiction as the case may be,” Gada stated.