Politics

Revealed: How Zamfara Governor, Matawalle bribed his way into APC

Fresh details are coming from the inner camp of Governor Bello Muhammad Matawalle of Zamfara State on how the Governor bribed APC stalwarts and federal level political office holders in government to decamp from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to All Progressive Congress, APC in June this year.

Our medium gathered that, these details came in a recorded telephone conversation with Hon. Yusuf Alhassan Kanoma who is one of the right hand State Assembly members of Governor Matawalle.

Hon. Kanoma was explaining to one of the Commissioners in the state why the state went broke and found it difficult to pay the October salary much less do other development projects when the information allegedly leaked.

In the conversation that took place with English and Hausa switches, Mr. Kanoma mentioned that the effort to decamp to APC cost Matawalle more than 10 billion naira which were all drawn from many shoddy contractual arrangements in the name of the State Government.

Some of the leading beneficiaries of the moneys that exchanged hand were the Ag. National Chairman of APC, Governor Mai-Mala Buni; Attorney General of the Federation Abubakar Malami and former Zamfara State Governor Ahmad Sani Yariman Bakura who played a guardian role to Governor Matawalle in the decamping process.

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Kanoma also mentioned the occasion of the launching of vehicle distribution for judges in the state commissioned by the Attorney General as the entry point for getting the attention of the Minister of Justice for his share. The names of Governors, Bagudu of Kebbi State and Badaru of Jigawa all featured in the conversation with Mr. Kanoma with a tag from the share of the money. Also mentioned as beneficiaries were Femi Fani Kanyode and Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, Dr. Ali Isah Pantami.

Asked how he knew about these details, Mr. Yusuf Alhassan Kanoma explained that he got the explanation when he was applying pressure on the Governor to complete the road linking his hometown of Kanoma in Maru Local Government with the highway. He said the Governor had no option but to explain to him especially when he wanted him to spearhead the false accusation of connivance with banditry to two of his colleagues in the State House who are posing a threat to the Governor. He added that the Governor wanted him to facilitate the third review of the contract of the Cargo airport in Gusau which gulps a lot of money without much progress.

It could be recalled that Governor Bello Matawalle became the Governor of Zamfara State on a platter of gold under the platform of PDP when the court cancelled all the elective posts won by APC and gave the PDP. Although he vowed never to leave the PDP, Governor Matawalle was scared by the strength of the reunion of former Governor Yari and Senator Marafa camps in February this year which made it clearly impossible for him to win election against the two powerful politicians come 2023. Afraid of the ways in which he made life difficult to some of their supporters including imprisonment of some of them, he decided to join APC from the Federal level which made the use of humongous amount of money like the one mentioned by Hon. Kanoma necessary.

Commentators on the state of affairs in Zamfara observed that the state dived deeper into state of poverty and insecurity under Matawalle whose policy of dealing with the banditry was considered faulty.

His attempt to make peace with the bandits failed woefully; just like the present attempt of locking down market and telecom services in the state does not yield any positive result with bandits operating with impunity in most parts of the state.

In the conversation, Hon. Yusuf Kanoma was much worried by how joining the APC did not seem to solve Governor Bello Matawalle’s camp with all the uncertainty of State Party congress and the action of agrieved party members from both PDP and APC against them.

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