President Muhammadu Buhari failed to see Bauchi State Governor Mohammed Abubakar and his Adamawa State counterpart, Jibrilla Bindow, when the duo visited the Presidential Villa yesterday.
Both men face an electoral battle in about a week, following a declaration by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that the results of the March 9, 2019 gubernatorial election in the states were inconclusive.
On Tuesday, three days after the election, All Progressives Congress (APC) governors, Kashim Shettima (Borno), Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa), Yahaya Bello (Kogi) and Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Nasir El-Rufai (Kaduna) and Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti) also visited the Villa.
No reasons were given for both visits.
The Guardian learnt that Abubakar and Bindow arrived in the Villa separately and sought to see Buhari. They met a brick wall however, as the president was not favourably disposed to seeing them. Thereafter, they held audience with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo behind closed doors. Emerging over an hour later, they declined questions from reporters.
Some observers may see the meeting as a move by the governors to curry the president’s favour, to keep their states from slipping into the hands of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The fight to retain the APC’s hold on Kano State also continued yesterday as Commissioner for Local Government Murtala Sule Garo debunked an allegation that the state government withdrew a large sum of money aimed at influencing voting when incumbent Governor Abdullahi Ganduje faces PDP challenger, Abba Yusuf, in the March 23, 2019 re-run.
A group, Kano Civil Society Situation Room, had claimed the government released N235,500,000 to APC members for the alleged purpose. It, therefore, petitioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), seeking an investigation into what it described as organised crime.