To avoid being sanctioned for not meeting the deadline date for collection and submission of completed expression of interest and nomination forms set by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), more aspirants vying for different positions at the weekend thronged the party’s Wadata Plaza secretariat in Abuja either to obtain or to return their forms.
The party last Wednesday had extended the closure of forms collection earlier slated for Thursday, September 6 to Monday, September 10 and return of complete forms to Tuesday, September 11.
Among the aspirants was a female gubernatorial hopeful from Nasarawa State, Patricia Akwashiki, who is set to break the jinx to be the first female governor in Nigeria.
While decrying the over-reliance of states on the Federation Account, she promised to diversify the economy of the state and utilise the proximity of Nasarawa to Abuja to increase the Internally Generated Revenue of the state.
On the chances of a woman becoming state governor, she said: “I agree that it’s been a religious and cultural thing in the North. In 2015, Hajia Aisha Alhassan tried it in Taraba and she almost made it. I think it is possible that a woman can be a governor of any part of this country.
“I’m the first female to go to the Senate, House of Representatives and the first woman to be given a minister. So, I think I will break that jinx and still be the first woman to become a governor in Nigeria. It’s not impossible. It is more cultural than religious”.
A young governorship aspirant from Kwara State, Mohammed Ajia, challenged the Nigerian youth that 2019 is their time to flourish politically and they should take advantage of it, because they have the number and the strength.
“We have said that we the young people we shall actualise our struggles by contesting for elective positions in various political parties and by so doing we can impact on our people.
“Complaining at the back side will not solve the situation of Nigeria. So I enjoin all the people Kwara State and Nigeria at large to be active in politics we will be able to contribute our quota and Nigeria will be better country”.
The aspirant, who recently resigned from security service to join politics, wants to help the country in the area of security challenge.
A Katsina State governorship aspirant, Senator Yakubu Lado has promised to rescue the state from the maladministration of the All Progressives Congress (APC) if elected as governor next year.
He accused the Aminu Masari-led APC administration in Katsina State of failure and has vowed to retrieve back the state and set it on the path of progress and prosperity.
He said: “APC has failed. It has not only failed but it has set back Katsina State over several decades. Under the previous PDP government in Katsina, it was a progressive state with emphasis on human capital development and infrastructure.
“But look at what we have today. The government of APC has eroded all the gains of the last administrations and replaced them with hunger and starvation.
“Today, all the important sectors, be it health, education, agriculture, among others are suffering because the present government lacks the initiative to provide proper leadership.
“That’s why the people are asking for me to come and save the state. They believe I have the capacity to bring Katsina back on the right course“.
Lado, who represented Katsina South Senatorial District, in the Senate between 2011 and 2015, expressed confidence that he would secure the ticket of the PDP in the forthcoming primary, saying that he was best placed to return Katsina State to the party which governed it for 16 years.
A gubernatorial aspirant from Nassarawa State, Senator Phillip Gyunka, also promised to effectively harness the vast mineral deposits in the state to revive the sleeping economy of Nasarawa State.
The senator representing Nassarawa North said he will apply his experience as a chartered economist and chartered accountant with 22 years in the banking sector to transform the state economically.
“Nassarawa is a home of solid minerals, and as a home of solid minerals these are natural resources left untapped. If you go there today, there are avenues for bringing in industries that will use these solid minerals thereby creating job opportunities and creating wealth.
When you compared Nassarawa state with other states that were created on October 1, 1996, you will know that we are lagging behind and this is the cry of the people and that is why I am here to salvage our people to provide good governance and economic transformation. I want to transform the state economically, I want to provide good governance for our people”, he said.
Kicking against consensus arrangement, he said aspirants should not be afraid of going into the primary election, saying “it is just that generals are not obtained in the barracks, generals are obtained in the battle field. So, I believe that everybody should be allowed to go for primary”.