In Nigeria, it is a known fact that Bauchi state is one of the states in the North East where elections are fiercely contested. It is also a state with political heavyweights that have at one time, or the other played it big at the national scene.
In the current dispensation, the number four position happens to be occupied by a Bauchi indigene in the person of Rt. Hon. Yakubu Dogara, the speaker of the House of Representatives. And he has been in the news of late as regards the permutations for the 2019 elections.
Rt. Hon Yakubu Dogara has not signified interest in seeking re-election. However, his foot soldiers have been able to secure a place for him post-2019 if there is a change in leadership. According to impeccable sources in Bauchi state, it was revealed that the Speaker and the Governor do not see an eyeball to eyeball.
The source stated that the Speaker hadn’t forgiven the Governor for trying to thwart his ambition of becoming Speaker of the House of Representatives.
“The Speaker has said it openly that it would be a fight to finish with Governor Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar. He thinks that the governor didn’t mean well for him and so, therefore, there is no need associating with him.”
This much is corroborated with the posture of Speaker Yakubu Dogara on issues that concerns Bauchi State. In some quarters, it is stated that the Speaker would team up with some political heavyweights to ensure that the governor does not return in 2019.
“Part of the plot is to use his position to weaken the political relevance of the governor at the federal level, through covert means, and one of them is the recent probe of the activities of the National Emergency Management Agency ( NEMA) by the House of Representatives Committee on Emergency and Disaster Preparedness, whose Director General is a close friend and confidante of the Governor of Bauchi state.” A source stated.
The source who pleaded anonymity stated that “the House of Representatives Committee has a clear mandate to indict Engr Mustapha Maihaja at all cost. Did you not wonder why the Chair of the Committee stated that committee was given the mandate to probe the activities of NEMA in the last one year, clearing omitting the years between 2015 -2017 where it was established that there was sleaze amongst a host of other anomalies perpetrated by the former management under Alhaji Sani Sidi, but the committee has turned a blind eye despite the glaring pieces of evidence”
Insider sources in NEMA confided that most interventions of NEMA especially for Internally Displaced Persons had significantly been affected by the ongoing probe by the House of Representatives. “as we speak, there is a quandary because the House of representatives Committee either by omission or commission have not been able to invite the real culprits in the NEMA saga. They have been confined to acting out the script of some powerful elements in the House of Representatives.”
It was also reliably gathered that the former DG has been reaching out to the dominant elements in the House of Representatives since the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) released an interim report on the activities of NEMA, which clearly indicted him and some directors that were suspended by the current management of NEMA chaired by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo.
“The issues around the investigation of NEMA are more than what meets the eyes. Remember that the vice president is the Chairman of the Board of NEMA and statutorily he gives approval for expenditures above the threshold of the DG. There is also a grand plot to rubbish the image of the VP before President Buhari. Instead of bringing the real culprits to book, they have been playing to the gallery” the source stated.
A source close to the camp of the Speaker who pleaded anonymity stated that the governor of Bauchi state would be in for a big surprise during the 2019 elections. The Speaker would ultimately laugh last because he has strategically positioned himself come 2019.
“I cannot state for now the direction of our movement. But all I can say is that the Speaker would be relevant come 2019, especially if there is a change of government. He has been approached with some juicy offers that are difficult to turn down. But for now, we are keeping our fingers crossed.” He stated.
Another source who is in the know of the game plan stated that the Speaker had been promised a top position in government should there be a change. “The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) position has been dangled to the speaker should he decide to play the game. I can assure you that the speaker is in bed with some mighty forces in the Northeast that have vowed to unseat President Muhammadu Buhari in the 2019 elections” he stated.
The source also added that the Speaker refused to be in attendance when President Muhammadu Buhari commissioned some projects of the Nigeria Airforce even though the Chief of Air Staff is an indigene of Bauchi State. These are all pointers to the game plan, which has been carefully hatched and been systematically executed.
“Is it not curious that the Speaker who is the number four citizen in Nigeria would be conspicuously absent during the visit of the President to his home state even when all other members of the National Assembly from Bauchi state were in attendance. I think the Speaker has signed a pact with the opposition group.” He stated.
This paper also discovered that the Speaker has decided to keep his constituency guessing whether he would seek re-election or not because of the alliance he has entered with some opposition members.