Kaura Versus Dogara War Of Words: The Battle For Bauchi’s Soul In 2023
One year after the election of Bala Muhammed (Kauran Bauchi) as the executive governor of Bauchi state, the marriage of convenience which bonded him with Rt. Honourable Barrister Yakubu Dogara, the immediate past speaker of the National Assembly became very sour. It was this short-lived political marriage that ousted Muhammed Abdullahi Abubakar from power. With M.A Abubakar out of the power equation in Bauchi state, Kaura and Dogara remain the major actors wrestling for power in the state.
Unsurprisingly, the no love lost political marriage of 22 consecutive months between Kaura and Dogara ended abruptly at the end of last month. The political fisticuffs between the duos typify the characters of our politicians. Decorum, altruism, integrity and philanthropy are mere gimmicks employed by politicians to garner support for ulterior political motives. What matters is personal interest. The gullible masses should therefore think deep in the depth of their thought and look beyond their noses. Politicians of Nigerian extraction are self-centered and deceptive people who not only guard, but enjoy showing off their hypocritical pretenses.
It was Honorable Dogara who threw the first political grenade at Governor Bala Muhammed in his resignation letter from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The former speaker adds insult to injury by defecting to the ruling All Progressive Party (APC). Those people who sit on the fence watching the unfolding drama between the two politicians in Bauchi state should be cautious not to fall prey to the antics of political gladiators and their hangers-on.
The defection of Dogara to the APC has dominated political discourse which overheated the polity and sparked political crisis with various implications within the state. What we are witnessing today in Bauchi is a pointer to the turbulent politicking of 2023 which has already started in 2020.
The incumbent governor is making a frantic effort to neutralize Dogara’s power and influence in his strong hold of Bogoro, Dass and Tafawa Balewa federal constituency. According to a Daily Trust report of August 2, 2020, “Dogara’s Sayawa ethnic group, with majority being civil servants, has become the first victim of the crisis because the community is now divided and yet to take a decision on who to support.” The report quoted Samson, Dogara’s tribe man as saying, “The Sayawa ethnic group has lots of civil servants working with the state government. Dogara’s defection will cause a face-off between government and the ethnic group,” a situation which he fears will be detrimental to Dogara’s politics and the interest of his people in the state.
In an attempt to cut Dogara to size, the governor belittled the former speaker, levelled him as inconsequential, a liar and neophyte in politics. Observers construe the recent solidarity visit to the Bauchi government house by some people from Dass, Tafawa Balewa and Bogoro as a politically motivated visit and a publicity stunt to show support for the governor and discredit Dogara’s swelling popularity in his base.
To give credence to the state government claims in the power tussle for Bauchi’s soul in 2023, prominent Sayawa who are sympathetic to the PDP or minions of the governor were drafted to partake in the solidarity visit. Hassana Arkila, the chairperson for Bauchi state Orphans and Vulnerable Children Agency (BASOVCA) and President of Zaar Development Association (ZDA), Dogara’s tribe main pressure group, Engineer Isuwa Galla, spoke in support of the governor and PDP led administration in the state.
The truth is, Rt. Honourable Dogara’s decamping is a big boost to the APC and a heavy blow and great loss to the PDP. Dogara is indisputably a dogged fighter, shrewd and savvy politician who invested heavily in his people. I do not know of any politician in Bauchi state who has more mushrooming influence in his constituency than Dogara. He is not a pushover or lazy politician who wins election by chance.
While the two heavy weight politicians are slugging it out on the pages of newspapers, their foot soldiers have turned the social media as a battle ground for 2023 politicking. There is nowhere in the cyberspace this political horse-trading is gaining more traction than on Facebook. We should appreciate Dogara’s appeal to his people-Zaar sons and daughters. He appeals to his people on all social media platforms to “cease forthwith, posting anything” in his defence even if he is “attacked or in the face of obvious provocation.” It is our hope and prayer that His Excellency will, in the same vein, appeal to his supporters to sheath-the-sword for peace to reign in our state. It is my opinion that His Excellency is the greatest beneficiary of peace in Bauchi.
Saleh Bature can be reached via [email protected]