Senator, Ibrahim Shekarau, has revealed that his defection from the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was due to the betrayal of the NNPP presidential candidate, and former governor of Kano state, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso.
Senator Shekarau who was a former governor of Kano state made this revelation while appearing on the Channels TV primetime programme, Politics Today, on Thursday.
He described the governor’s actions as a betrayal and “outright disregard, outright manipulation”, noting that what was important was the protection of his image, the truth and integrity.
Shekarau said, “We joined the party on the 18th of May. Long before then, almost two weeks earlier on, through my discussion with him, we made our proposals. At that time, it was the period of generating candidates of the various political offices to be contested in the 2023 general elections – state assembly, national assembly, governorship and senatorial seats.
“We sat down with Rabiu Kwankwaso. I submitted this proposal, he accepted it and he said in about one or two, three days, he’s going to prepare his proposal. And then I together with him will sit down to sort ourselves out and harmonise and see what we can do to produce electable people in our various constituencies”.
Senator Shekarau said that the Kwankwaso had presented him a senatorial form upon his defection to the party from the APC. He however challenged the former governor when the party leadership had released what he considered an incomplete list of candidate names.
Shekarau added,“This hope and trust and sincerity kept us moving up to the 18th of May where we had a public declaration and Kwankwaso came with all his own political associate it was a very big ceremony.
“It was at that meeting that he brought the senatorial seat of Kano central form, and presented it to me, he said I was the first to receive the form. At that time as at 18th of May, no other candidate had been identified or listed or given form through the various discussion that we agreed to make.
“The same 18th of May by the night, midnight, we saw a list released by the party leadership in the state, handwritten list of candidates by their constituencies and indicating as having solved the entire constituencies’ candidate.
“In fact, in the list released on the 18th by the night, even some constituencies had no name. The following morning I met him and I challenged the list released, we said this is unacceptable because in the entire list, except my name, no any other name from our own movement from our own political association was reflected on the list”.
It was learnt that following his challenge, the duo had agreed to set up a nine-man committee, made up of four men each from each of the governors’ camps and the party’s state chairman to harmonize the lists and fix the deficiencies. This assignment would eventually drag for three months until the closing date set by the Independent National Electoral Commission closed.
Shekarau said, “We convened a meeting, I had to call a meeting of my political associates, to brief them as to what we went through for three months.
And we set up a committee of 30 to go and review the situation, we still did not make it public.
“But to our surprise, few days later, my brother Rabiu Kwankwaso was on air on the Hausa service of the BBC, saying that there was no way we could be attended to, because we joined the party when it was too late.”
He added that it was deceitful for Governor Kwankwaso to have let them set up a committee, and then to turn around to say they had come late.