My dear compatriots of Bauchi State, To Allah the Most Beneficent, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful.
Let me start by again placing on record my gratitude to you, for the overwhelming victory that you gave to me in the just concluded governorship elections in the state. You will recall that in my victory speech yesterday, I made an impassioned plea to my opponents, that with the elections over, politics should be relegated to the background for statesmanship and governance.
I made the entreaty, conscious that what our state needs at this moment is unified action, a polling together of the various strengths of the people, to guarantee accelerated development and sustained improvement in the living standards of our people. I want to restate that invitation, also conscious that reconciliation is not the easiest of tasks, moreso when people allow their ego, personal interest, inordinate ambition and hate to becloud their sense of patriotism and purpose.
I state this against the background of a highly provocative and disrespectful statement credited to one of my opponents. If the content of the statement had been limited to the false claim that the election was rigged, it would have been appropriate to simply ignore it. However, the author who was decisively rejected by the voters threw every canon of decency to the wind in abusing the Governor of the state, indicting the security agencies and insulting the electorate for refusing to be hoodwinked by a false sense of love and pecuniary considerations.
I can understand the refusal of people who were never schooled in the tenets of democracy refusing to accept that the voters do not follow orders in choosing their leaders. I can sympathize with people whose over-bloated ego preclude them from accepting defeat. I can understand the disappointment of those whose pre-election utterances bothered on playing God but who have now been compelled to swallow the bitter reality that power belongs to God. But I cannot understand desperation and lies.
We went into the elections without the security paraphernalia boasted or brandished by some of our opponents; we went into the elections without the resources, both internal and external that our opponents mustered, we went into the elections without any godfather, let alone an Armada of “kingmakers” who arrogated to themselves the power to make and unmake leaders. Rather, we went into the elections trusting in Allah, who gives power to whom he chooses and takes it away from whom he chooses. It was in realization of the omnipotence of Allah that I pledged, on the eve of the election, to accept the outcome of the exercise. Even now, I reiterate that position.
Election should not be a matter of life and death. Similarly, holding public office should not be the only way to serve the people. I am grateful to God who has mercifully used me in several ways to serve our people, the nation and humanity. Growing up, my only aspiration, based on my humble beginnings as the son of a teacher and later district head, was to humbly serve humanity, just as teachers and district heads do. Never did I contemplate that I would rise to becoming a director in the federal civil service, talk less of becoming a senator and minister of the federal republic. When I was elected Governor in 2019, I saw it as God’s continuing bonuses in my life. I threw myself into it, every day, as if tomorrow would never come. If tomorrow comes and it pleases God to give the position to one of my compatriots, I will remain grateful to him.
For now, with my compatriots, we shall vigorously defend the mandate which the good people of Bauchi State have freely given to us in an election that has been adjudged as substantially free and fair. It is a sacred trust, and we trust that, by the grace of God, we shall prevail. We do so, inspired by your confidence in us, knowing that our people earnestly desire a continuation of the governance architecture that has led to the unprecedented infrastructural development in the state, the empowerment of our people, the revolutionary improvement in WAEC performance, substantial upscaling of healthcare infrastructure, and the improvement in social amenities. I know that you want a deepening of the inclusion policy of the Administration that has reduced strife, inter-group acrimony and insecurity. These are legitimate expectations that our compatriots who were never close to the grassroots may not readily appreciate.
However, let me assure you that neither would the Administration capitulate to the low impulses of our opponents, nor would we be distracted from our commitment to ensuring that Bauchi’s wheel of progress is not obstructed by people whose training and career do not accept that power belongs to God, let alone acknowledging that democracy also means that the voice of man is the voice of God.
Let me use this opportunity to congratulate the incoming Deputy Governor of Bauchi State, Hon. Auwal Mohammed Jatau and all the members of NASS, the Bauchi State House of Assembly from the various parties for the mandate they have received from their constituencies. I look forward to a harmonious working relationship with you in the joint effort to deepen democracy and guarantee the equitable distribution of the dividends of democracy, that has been the hallmark of this administration.
Finally, I enjoin all and sundry to remain calm and to go about their normal work without let or hindrance and without capitulating to provocation or intimidation.
In the end, may the will of God be done in our lives, our state and our country.
SEN. BALA ABDULKADIR MOHAMMED CON. (Kauran Bauchi, Jagaban Katagum) GOVERNOR 21/03/2023