Two top leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kano State boycotted the party’s ward congress held on Saturday.
The former governor of Kano State and senator representing Kano central, Rabiu Kwankwaso, and the deputy governor of Kano State, Hafiz Abubakar, boycotted the Saturday APC ward congress.
The ward congress at Madobi, the local government of Mr Kwankwaso was supervised by his political rival, Kano State’s Commissioner for Rural and Community Development, Musa Kwankwaso.
The commissioner visited some wards to observe the congress where he hailed APC members for orderly conduct.
However, the media aide to the former governor, Binta Sipikin, said that the APC members loyal to Mr. Kwankwaso conducted separate congresses in 484 wards of Kano State.
She accused the media of not covering their congress, adding that they are now compiling the result for onward submission to APC national headquarters, an indication that the fictionalisation of the party will continue.
The Kano State Deputy Governor, Hafiz Abubakar, was also not sighted at the Saturday’s ward congress in his Mandawari ward of Gwale Local Government Area.
The deputy governor complained in the media when his younger brother was removed from the chairmanship of APC in Mandawari ward in Gwale.
Although Governor Abdullahi Ganduje directed the reinstatement of the deputy governor’s brother, Saturday’s ward congress showed the emergence of one Salisu Sani as the elected chairman of Mandawari ward.
Mr Abubakar has not officially provided any reason for his boycott of the congress amidst speculations he is a loyalist of Mr Kwankwaso.
The state government is, however, unperturbed by the boycott and has described the congress as successful.
A statement signed by the chief press secretary to Mr Ganduje, Abba Anwar, said the governor described the ward congress as a unifying factor for the party at all levels, emphasising that, “Ours is to foster unity in democracy, for the overall development of our nation.”
After commending the party members for the peaceful conduct of the congress, Mr Ganduje said the way the congress was conducted was a clear indication that the people had accepted the party in all the 44 local governments in the state.
“The turn out is so encouraging, apart from being peaceful. This clearly indicates that APC’s performance in governance is being acknowledged and appreciated by Nigerians,” he added.
He called on the elected executive members of the party to remember that APC is a people-oriented party that believes in good service delivery in governance.
The congress, according to the governor, shows that Kano State is still intact for President Muhammadu Buhari.
“I urge you, as newly elected leaders of our great party, to ensure justice and fairness in all your dealings. I also urge you and other members of our great party, the APC, to work hard and see that the remaining Congresses are peaceful and successful,” he said.
Mr Ganduje was deputy to Mr Kwankwaso when the latter was governor. Since Mr Ganduje emerged governor, however, both men have become rivals splitting the party in the state into two factions.
All efforts by President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC national headquarters to resolve the crisis have failed.
Kano, the most populous state in Northern Nigeria, is also the state where President Buhari got his highest votes in the 2015 election.