By Chesa Chesa
Governor Umar Ganduje of Kano State says that he fell out with his predecessor, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, because the latter wants to continue to run the state government even after leaving office.
Ganduje was Kwankwaso’s deputy for four years before he assumed office in 2015 with the support of the former governor who is now a member of the National Assembly.
Their relationship has, however, gone sour such that Kwankwaso was recently prevented from coming Kano by the state police command, even as his faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC) boycotted the local council elections held last weekend.
Asked by State House correspondents on Tuesday in Abuja what caused the bitter rift between them, Ganduje said that it was because of his refusal to succumb to the undue external influence of Kwankwaso in running the affairs of the state.
He said: “As you know, we were very good friends. In fact, my involvement in politics cannot be complete without Kwankwaso and the history of Kwankwaso politics cannot be complete without me.
“But somewhere, somehow, things went wrong. We believe in politics you will get to a point you cannot rule and manage a state and then you are being controlled from outside. You know that one is very difficult to happen if you look at the psychology of leaders”, Ganduje said.
He stressed that last weekend’s local council elections were held peacefully despite the antics of Kwankwaso and his supporters to paint a picture of insecurity and imminent violence in the state.
He said: “We conducted local government elections precisely on Saturday, 10th February and it was very peaceful. Independent observers were there, the result was a 100 per cent APC. The election was free and fair. So you can see that the insecurity was publicised outside Kano. People believe here (Abuja) that there is insecurity, but in Kano, there is peace and stability.”
He also debunked reports of underage voting in last weekend local council polls in the state, saying that the photos and videos showing such acts were mere propaganda by political opponents.
Images of children voting in some polling units during the election have flooded the social media, but the governor State House correspondents on Tuesday that they were actually of pupils on school assembly lines.
“That was propaganda. You can ask the national observers who went there; they held a press conference; all those pictures were children from school assembly. It is not true, it is part of the propaganda,” Ganduje stated.