The recent impeachment of Admiral Murtala Nyako (rtd) as governor of Adamawa state obviously settles the crisis that has bedeviled the North East state for some time now to a large extent. But as an indigene of the state, I know and I am convinced by the facts on ground that we are yet to get over the challenges that led to the crisis that eventually consumed Nyako. What am I saying? My state and indeed, our state needs urgently a pragmatic leader who can mobilize the available human and material resources within and outside Adamawa to develop the state.
There is no gain repeating the obvious fact that the state has been left behind in terms of basic amenities and other infrastructural developments neighbouring states like Gombe and Taraba can boast of at this moment. No thanks to bad and visionless leadership. This then makes the choice of whoever will succeed Nyako as the next elected governor of the state the choice of all rather than a product of any imposition by any political clique.
As democracy in the true sense of it actually mean, our next governor must be the choice of the people, by the people and for the people. Our next governor must be one that has a proven and verifiable record of performance which experience must be brought to bear in the mold of an emergency intervention. In essence, there is no time for learning process under the critical and comatose condition the state has been left.
As a stakeholder in Adamawa state, I am therefore particularly happy when I read of the caliber of other stakeholders that have shown interest in governing the state. Leading the pack with an edge is former military Governor of Borno and Lagos states, General Mohammed Buba Marwa (rtd) who until recently was also the Nigerian High Commissioner in South Africa. I must confess at this point that Gen. Marwa is a man I have long admired from afar especially from his days as Governor of Borno and Lagos. As a fresh graduate then, his exploits and developmental initiatives that have remained visible landmarks in those states till today fascinated me. How that got me to make attempts to join the military then will be a story for another day. It is to the credit of this brilliant Nigerian that the most popular means of transportation by the Nigerian masses in Lagos and other parts of the country today, the tricycle popularly called Keke Marwa, was introduced and brought into the country by him then as military Governor of Lagos state. Till date, the General Hospitals he built in Borno state remain signposts of meaningful development in the state. The security intervention squad that ended the reign of armed robbers in Lagos called ‘Operation Sweep’ remains in charge of the state security today under its new name ‘Rapid Response Squad’.
This space will definitely be too small to go into the several housing estates, bridges and roads constructed as part of Marwa’s legacies in Lagos.
As enviable and excellent as Marwa’s track records may be, they are however not the focus of this piece. As such, I will now concentrate on the political developments in Adamawa, my dear state. Just as I was talking with a number of my friends within and outside the state on the need for us to get interested and involved in the process of electing the next governor of our state so that we will not have any reason praying for the impeachment of the next one, news reports show that elected delegates of the PDP have started endorsing Gen. Marwa as the preferred candidate for the state governorship in the election scheduled to hold in the next few weeks. From the records, all the 335 delegates of the party from all the 77 wards in the Adamawa Central Senatorial district about two weeks ago gave their votes to Marwa in a pre-election endorsement.
Chairman of the PDP in the district, Alhaji Danjuma Iliyasu who spoke at a meeting where General Marwa was assured of the party’s ticket said their decision was based on the former envoy’s unbeatable records of service in Borno and Lagos states where he had served as military Governor before. The party’s chieftain said it is the desire of everybody in Adamawa state to see such enviable performance replicated in the state.
Iliyasu had lamented that while most states in the federation were enjoying dividends of democracy, the reverse is the case in Adamawa due to bad leadership, adding that it has therefore become a challenge to the delegates and all Adamawa citizens to rally round Marwa in order to transform the state in terms of socio-economic development of the state. He stressed that the deplorable condition of the state calls for total support for Marwa so that he can bring his development expertise to bear in Adamawa state, which he said is seriously begging for infrastructural development in all facets.
Few days after the endorsement by Adamawa Central Senatorial District, PDP delegates in Adamawa North Senatorial Zone followed suit by throwing their weight behind him. Reports indicate that Secretary of the PDP in the Northern Senatorial Zone, Dr. Ayuba Tari disclosed that about 90 per cent of the delegates who raised their hands in support of Marwa’s gubernatorial candidacy, would do everything possible to ensure that he gets the ticket of the party to enable him emerge as the governor of the state because he is a tested and trusted administrator.
To cap it all, PDP delegates in Adamawa South Senatorial zone led by Hajiya Fatima Ornah raised their hands at an endorsement meeting with Marwa signifying their total support for the seasoned administrator. The occasion, which took place at Galaxy Hotel, Numan, attracted delegates drawn from the nine local government areas of Ganye, Toungo, Jada, Mayo Belwa, Numan, Demsa, Shelleng, Guyuk and Lamurde. The gale of Marwa’s endorsements became more interesting when the retired General paid a courtesy call on the paramount ruler of Bachama Kingdom, Homun Honest Irmiya Stephen. Reports indicate that the royal father declared his absolute support for Marwa describing him as a man of impeccable character and the type of leader needed by the state at a critical time like this. The royal father reportedly said but for his present position, he would have been in the forefront of campaigns for Marwa.
In Numan to confer with the delegates from the southern senatorial district and visited his palace to seek his blessing as he seeks the governorship ticket of his party.
The Hama Bachama vouched for character disposition of the former military administrator, and called for the for re-run gubernatorial election in the state to play the game according to its rule with the fear of God in their minds. According to the royal father, Marwa’s political profile speaks volume of his ability and capability and the electorates know what he can do for them if elected as the next governor of the state. No doubt, the former Lagos Governor had already met the delegates in 226 poling units of the state and other stakeholders to secure their support for his gubernatorial ambition, my take on this gale of endorsements for Marwa is that he should not lose focus or get carried away by the mass of support coming his way.
This is the kind of goodwill enviable track records like his can bring when one needs the support of his people. It is also a challenge to him that as our people have made commitments to thrust him with their mandate, they need him to replicate those wonders or miracles of modern day governance he performed in Borno and Lagos states. Adamawa needs his experience and brilliance more than the other states because he is first of all an indigene and a major stakeholder in the state.
This is also a note of warning to other stakeholders, the PDP and the people of Adamawa, it is only when the choice of the people is allowed that there can be development. That is practical democracy. We have seen what imposition can cause in Nyako, Adamawa must never take imposition again because the state needs to move forward and only an upwardly mobile and dynamic man of the people like Marwa can bring about the much needed change at this crucial juncture. That’s my take.
Yeena Sanga, a lawyer wrote in from Jimeta, Adamawa state