Kogi Governorship: When Murtala Ajaka is No Longer Coming

The social media buzz that brought about ethnic agitations ahead of the November 11th Governorship election in Kogi state, has started dying a peaceful death, because the pillar of such bigoted clamour, Murtala Yakubu Ajaka whom the group of ethnic chauvinists hoped on to fly their agenda, may have dashed their hopes for his personal political interest.

Ajaka, a core Nigerian politician and Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) ran his aspiration to fly his party’s flag in Kogi state, on a foundation that was self-serving, nepotistic, divisive and capable of throwing the state eight years back. These were evident in his speeches and public statements.

It could be rightly said that he declared a war on the Governor of the state on personal sentiments, even months before the primary election he lost. On video, he indirectly said he made Yahaya Bello the governor; a statement possibly responsible for his recent political woes. For one who was always regurgitating the assurance, “I will bring it home,” to his followers on social media, says much about how his line of thought places Igala land as the only home, far ahead of a united Kogi state.

This leaves one to imagine the nature of government such tribalized personality could bring to leading a state as diverse as Kogi state – a miniature of Nigeria. Little wonder, following his loss at the primary election, top on his agenda for consideration and pressure, was his intention and that of his followers to muscle the ticket of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) from the rightful owner who contested and won the ticket. How do you tell the whole world that Yahaya Bello manipulated you from getting the APC ticket, then plan to go and manipulate your way into another party? A pot calling a kettle black?

However, from all indications, it appears the battle before him has started giving him a second thought, such that “Muri is coming” may no longer be coming. This is also a reminder that political parties have from now till June 9th to submit their final nominees.

The first battle for Ajaka is getting the unanimous endorsement of the Igala race, which is now conspicuously impossible, especially with the division set in by people like Ilona Idoko, Adejoh Okeme, and Musa Mubarak who all enjoy certain strong political patronage from their kinsmen and supporters.

Perhaps, the other battle Muri faces, is the battle with himself, his thoughts and political calculations. He is left with the choice of going all in with another party, or stay with his party to enjoy “the fruits of his labour.” It is public knowledge that he maintains a mutual relationship with the outgoing President, and President-elect. This only means he could lose much more by leaving the APC at the very moment he could juice it.

To this end, as it stands now, when Muri is no longer coming, the major contenders in the race to succeed Governor Yahaya Bello, are Ahmed Usman Ododo, Dino Melaye, Leke Abejide, Adejoh Okeme, and Musa Mubarak.

Muhammad Ahmad writes from Lokoja.

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