- Why we withdrew for Shettima•
- REMILEKUN DARAMOLA in Maiduguri•
Candidates of fifteen political parties for Borno central senatorial district on Wednesday in Maiduguri announced their withdrawal from Saturday’s re-scheduled Presidential and national assembly elections in unanimous endorsement of APC’s candidate, Governor Kashim Shettima.
The candidates said they took decision in view of their conviction that of all candidates, “no one has acquired the kind of experience necessary to represent Borno central in terms of understanding the demands of the military’s operational efforts, the existing gaps, the humanitarian issues and the next phase of rebuilding as much as the APC’s candidate for Borno central, Alhaji Kashim Shettima”.
Chairman, forum of candidates for Borno central, AbdulKadir Fema of the Action Peoples Party, APP, read a position paper on behalf of the 15 candidates at a press conference held at the Inter-party Advisory Council’s office in Maiduguri.
“Ten candidates supported the Chairman in attendance of the briefing while others gave their consent as they were out of the state. Candidates of Action Peoples Party (PPA), Better Nigeria Progressives Party, BNPP, Progressive Peoples Alliance, PPA, New Progressive Movement, NPM, Yes Electorates Solidarity, YES, Peoples Party of Nigeria, PPN, Nigerian Elements Progressive Party, NEPP, Allied Peoples Movement, APM, Nigeria Community Movement Party, NCMP, Coalition for Change, C4C, Unity Party of Nigeria, UPN, Justice Must Preval Party, JMPP, Independent Democrats, ID and Democratic Alliance, DA. There are 20 candidates for Borno central senatorial election.
“We, the under-signed candidates of 15 political parties for Borno central senatorial election, have after consultations with our supporters and amongst ourselves, resolved to withdraw from the February 23, 2019 re-scheduled Presidential and National Assembly elections in unanimous support for candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC for Borno central senatorial, Alhaji Kashim Shettima.
“We took this decision based on our conviction that even though each of us has the capacity and the patriotic zeal to competently representing the people of Borno central in the 9th Senate, we are of the opinion that in the next national assembly, three major issues will largely define the representation of Borno people,” they said.
They explained that “These three issues will be:1. Matters concerning the complexities of ongoing military operations and the need legislative collaboration with the federal government to accelerate efforts and complete the important task of overcoming the insurgency using military, economic and political approaches that can contribute towards the full restoration of peace in Borno State.
- Matters concerning humanitarian crisis. Recent attacks by the insurgents in northern Borno has without doubt, reversed some of the gains recorded by the state government on the return of displaced persons to rebuilt communities in Kukawa and Kala-Balge local government areas. There are still residents of Marte and Abadam living in Monguno. These are serious humanitarian issues that require depth of understanding and contacts to address them.
- Matters of rebuilding rest of Borno communities affected by Boko Haram destructions. From a World Bank report, the Boko Haram has destroyed about one million homes.
“Already Borno State Government has rebuilt 30,000 houses, which means there is so much yet to be done. Understanding this rebuilding and working with the federal government, the next administration in Borno and developmental partners will be crucial aspect of representing Borno at the 9th Senate.
These three issues dominated our consultations amongst us and with our respective supporters”
“As every objective and reasonable mind will agree with us, of all the candidates for Borno central senatorial election, no one has acquired the kind of experience in necessary to represent Borno central in terms of understanding the demands of the military’s operational efforts, the existing gaps, the humanitarian issues and the next phase of rebuilding as much as the APC’s candidate for Borno central, Alhaji Kashim Shettima.
“He has in Borno’s most difficult time, been serving as Governor. He has proved to sufficiently understand these issues. We believe that the experiences he has gained and the contacts will be necessary for Senator representing Borno to engage relevant me ministries and agencies of the federal government including engagements with the Ministry of Defense and different service chiefs, Ministry of interior, Ministries of foreign affairs, Education and Industry and agencies like the North East Development Commission and the UN amongst others to deploy legislative tools of lobbying and the exchange of support through legitimate trade by barter negotiations to help in fast-tracking the kind of support Borno needs and deserves”.
“We are so confident that Kashim Shettima will, insha’Allah, represent Borno as much and even better that the way we intended to do. Allah has, by making him Governor in Borno’s challenging years, afforded him a superior advantage that the people of Borno stand to gain from his potentially efficient representation, as the next Senator for Borno central senatorial zone, insha’Allah. We shall be willing to pass to him our suggestions with the hope they will further enrich his representation of our people.
“We thank members of our respective parties and supporters for accepting our unanimous position that is the best interest of Borno State. We appeal to all of them and the entire electorates of Borno central senatorial zone to cast their votes for the APC in favour of Alhaji Kashim Shettima”.