Ahead of 2015: Shettima, Sheriff reconcile
As politicians realign for the 2015 general elections, the rift between the governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima and his predecessor, Ali Modu Sheriff appears to have been resolved as indications emerged yesterday that both leaders have decided to reconcile.
Governor Shettima and his predecessor, Ali Sheriff have been engaged in a heated bickering over 2015 electioneering even as loyalists and supporters of both leaders fight openly in attempts to express their support, a development which created political tension in the state ahead of the 2015 polls. Just recently, hoodlums suspected to be supporters of the two leaders pelted both the incumbent and his predecessor in Maiduguri, a situation residents described as unfortunate.
But the state Deputy Governor, Zannah Umar Mustapha yesterday said both leaders have resolved 'to put the past behind and work together for the good of the state and success of the,' All Progressives Congress (APC).
In an interview with journalists at his Biu country home, South of Borno after his registration as an APC member, Zannah said both his boss (Shettima) and former governor Sheriff have reconciled. 'Everything has come to an end now. As I am talking to you now, Sheriff is in Maiduguri and already discussing with my boss to move ahead,' he disclosed.
Reacting to the possible return of hostility by the two leaders especially in the choice of candidates for elective positions, the deputy governor insisted that the political problem has ended.
'The good thing is that throughout this crisis, my boss, Governor Kashim Shettima did not say any negative thing about former governor, Ali Sheriff. My boss has always said Sheriff is the father of all of us and we see him as such. No quarrel again, we are one,' he maintained.
He however, blamed politicians for fueling what he called a family misunderstanding. He said some politicians loyal to both leaders were engaged in disseminating rumours and falsehood among supporters of the governor and his predecessor to heighten the crisis, adding that the media cashed in on the bickering to get their news.
He said though disagreement was normal in politics, the challenges of operating while hostility persisted between his boss and former governor were enormous. 'I was operating between the two leaders and I must confess it was a difficult thing because I found myself in a situation where we the former ANPP family see the former governor as the father of all and my boss, Governor Shettima as our leader,' he explained.