Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, has advised politicians and electorates to be circumspect and considerate in their utterances and conducts during the period of electioneering campaign ahead of the 2023 elections.
In particular, the governor called on politicians of all shades who will be elected after the campaign have been called upon to regard their victory as that of all the people of the country and not that of their party alone.
A statement signed by the media adviser to the governor, Muhammad Bello, said governor Tambuwal made the call on Sunday at a symposium organized by the Muslim Solidarity Forum (MSF), held at the International Conference Center, Kasarawa, Sokoto state.
According to him, all citizens should take this period of electioneering campaign as one set aside for peaceful vote-seeking and not a “battle for power as being projected by some politicians.”
“We should be conscious of the fact that, if a survey were to be carried out, those of us that are card-carrying members of political parties are insignificant in number compared to ordinary citizens. Consequently, it is for politicians to unsettle the majority at this time of electioneering campaign.
“We should all observe the rules and regulations guiding electoral conduct. If we adhere to these norms, we would not find problems on the days of elections.
“Also, the period after elections is very significant. Whoever is victorious should be just to the people. This entails a violence-free post-election period, which is, to a large extent closely linked to the ways and manners in which the people’s franchise are sought now,” the Governor posited.
He advised politicians not to be blinded by their ambitions so as to cause their followers to be violent and destructive. Instead, he appealed to them to have faith in the outcome of free and fair elections.
Outlying his prognosis of the post elections period, Tambuwal said it should be a time when those elected should focus on delivering good governance, citing his magnanimity after winning his tenure for the second term as Governor in Sokoto state in 2019.
“After the acrimony that heralded the divine-propelled emergence of my second tenure, we were advised to sponsor female students to study abroad. I interacted with the former Chairman of the state Scholarship Board, Hon. Altine Shehu Kajiji.
“We decided that all indigenes of Sokoto state who were qualified should be considered irrespective of the political leanings or affiliations of their parents or guardians.
“Incidentally, the children of the Chairman of the state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Isa Sadiq Achida, were among the beneficiaries. We approved their sponsorship because we believe that they too are indigenes of the state and must partake in this endeavour.
“As we speak, the Secretary of the APC in Sokoto is a civil servant; and we have never directed that he should be deprived of his salary or take any disciplinary measure against him,” Tambuwal emphasized, pointing out that “it is counter-productive for us to use our positions to cause disaffection or ill-will in the way public services are conducted for the good of all.”
In their separate remarks, the representatives of the two immediate predecessors of Governor Tambuwal, ex-Governor Attahiru Dalhatu Bafarawa and Sen. Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko appealed to their followers to be issue-based and law-abiding in their campaign discourse.
On his part, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, noted that the stakeholders have no other abode than Sokoto, thus the need to ensure that things are done right, particularly those of leadership elections.
In his remarks, the chairman of the forum, Professor Isah Mai Shanu, said the reasons for organising the symposium is to discuss and rub minds on the forthcoming 2023 general elections with a view to having smooth exercise by reminding the general public of their responsibilities before, during and after the exercise in conformity with the teaching of Islam.
Also speaking at the ceremony, Professor Mansur Ibrahim, former Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC, Administration) of the Usman Danfodio University, Sokoto (UDUS), presented a paper on the roles of stakeholders: leaders and electorates before, during and after the elections according to the teaching of Islam.
The ceremony was also attended by the Ulama, Imams, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), security personnel, former governors, leaders of political parties and gubernatorial candidates of various political parties.
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