How Bauchi APC Primaries Was Marred By Fraud, Violence, Thuggery And Outright Falsification Of Results
Without a shadow of doubt, the National Assembly primaries conducted by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Bauchi state was an absolute sham exercise characterized by massive fraud, substitution of delegate lists, violence, assault and brazen acts of brutality and harassment of certain aspirants and their agents, and outright falsification of election results directed by officials in the topmost hierarchy of the APC.
Hon. Aliyu Gebi
Most of the venues of the primaries witnessed the absence of electoral officials and materials thus voting did not take place in the vast majority of electoral wards in the state, a deliberate and nefarious ploy by anti-democratic forces to impose their will on the people through manipulation of the electoral process coupled with the brazen falsification of election results.
The unlawful substitution of approved delegates list was another egregious instrument deployed by those autocratic elements to ensure that those aspirants they did not favour were rigged out of their legitimate victory.
In any case, the primaries results were not announced in Bauchi state where they were conducted, rather the action shifted to Abuja where strange and totally spurious figures were announced that ran counter to what actually transpired in the Bauchi polling centres.
Most accusing fingers point to the Bauchi state governor, M.A. Abubakar and the national chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, for allegedly conniving to rig the primaries in favour of their preferred aspirants by ensuring that delegates lists were altered to achieve desired ends, by making sure that primaries did not take place in strongholds of unrecognized aspirants as well as transferring the entire process of collation and declaration of results to Abuja, rather than Bauchi state, the venue of the primaries.
Indeed many have questioned the rationale of declaring the primaries results in Abuja, faraway from where the entire process took place given the fact that it gave ample time and opportunity to falsify, manipulate and distort the results.
It was also a blatant arrogation of powers by the national leadership which is unconstitutional, illegitimate, nurgatory and a gross abuse of the electoral laws and processes.
For instance, the primaries conducted in Bauchi federal constituency was perhaps the worst example of the sham process that Governor M.A. Abubakar and Comrade Adams Oshiomhole would wish to impose on the hapless Bauchi populace as a transparent primaries process that accorded with due process and the rule of law.
However, the plain truth remains that primaries were not conducted in most of the 12 federal wards of that make up the federal constituency as no electoral officials or electoral materials were present or available on the day of the primaries.
However, in few polling booths where electoral officials and materials were present, violent thugs and vandals disrupted the electoral process, snatched the ballot papers, tore them up and chased everybody away with dangerous weapons when it became clear that a popular aspirant, Hon. Aliyu Ibrahim Gebi was coasting home to victory.
The powers that be in Bauchi Government House and APC national headquarters have repeatedly vowed to truncate any attempt by Hon. Aliyu Gebi to return to the National Assembly even though he worked assiduously for the formation of the APC as a vibrant Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) Member of the House of Representatives (2011-2015).
Indeed without the strenuous efforts and courageous dedication of Hon. Aliyu Gebi to the progressive, populist and grassroots oriented ideology of President Muhammad Buhari, there would have been no way the CPC, later APC would have had a solid foundation in Bauchi state and the Northeast region as a whole.
This is due to the ineluctable fact that Hon. Aliyu Gebi together with other CPC stalwarts fought a titanic battle to retain their seats as well as advance and propagate the progressive philosophy in the face of unprecedented harassment, intimidation, state sponsored violence and the unlawful deployment of federal might by the then ruling PDP in Bauchi and Abuja.
Hon. Aliyu Gebi even withdrew from the APC Bauchi South Senatorial by-election primaries even though he was the odds on favourite to clinch the nomination given his undisputed popularity and widespread acceptance throughout the nooks and crannies of Bauchi state.
As an ardent party loyalist not given to inordinate pursuit of power for personal gain and advantage. Hon. Aliyu Gebi stepped down from the aforesaid senatorial primaries for the sake of party unity, cohesion and stability and it amounts to rubbing salt on injury for the political supremo to be deprived of his mandate for the House of Representatives seat in the just concluded APC primaries which he clearly won going by all objective calculations and postulations.
It is also instructive to note that Governor M.A. Abubakar, comrade Adams Oshiomhole and other alleged antagonists and traducers of Hon. Aliyu Gebi are relative newcomers to the party and were not around when the latter suffered, toiled, labored and burnt the midnight oil for the APC during the PDP’s infamous years of the locust. At this point in time tens of thousands of APC party faithfuls, activists, supporters and stakeholders are calling on President Muhammadu Buhari as the national leader of the party to put his foot down decisively and restore the mandate of Hon. Aliyu Gebi and others in order to avert mass defections from the party as well as colossal defeat in the 2019 elections at the hands of a resurgent PDP.
A word is enough for the wise.
COMRADE Hassan Misau, Political Affairs Analyst Sent This Piece From Bauchi, Bauchi State.