Adamawa Guber: How PDP Govs Plotted Fintiri’s Disqualification, Fintiri Fights Back, Mulls Plan B
The acting governor of Adamawa State, Ahmadu Umar Fintiri was yesterday disqualified from contesting for the October 11 governorship election in the state.
While Ibrahim Mantu, Chairman of the screening committee which disqualified Fintiri cited the violation of section 191, subsections (2) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), as the reason for is disqualification, indications have emerged that Fintiri was stopped by the influential PDP Governors’ Forum led by Akwa Ibom State governor Godswill Akpabio, fuelling speculations that his disqualification was deliberate.
The section reads: “The Deputy Governor of a State shall hold the office of Governor of the State if the office of Governor becomes vacant by reason of death, resignation, impeachment, permanent incapacity or removal of the governor from office for any other reason in accordance with section 188 or 189 of this constitution.
(2) Where any vacancy occurs in the circumstances mentioned in subsection (1) of this section during a period when the office of Deputy Governor of the State is also vacant, the Speaker of the House of Assembly of the State ‘shall’ hold the office of Governor of the State for a period of not more than three months, during which there shall be an election of a new Governor of the State who shall hold office for the unexpired term of office of the last holder of the office.”
But beyond the reason stated in the constitution, it was gathered that the governors made frantic efforts to stop both Fintiri and Ribadu. While they hinged their reason for Fintiri’s as a move aimed at discouraging rebellion from other assembly speakers that of Ribadu was seen as a yet-to-abate political rivalry.
Both the Presidency and the national leadership of the PDP were reported two weeks ago of being in a dilemma over Fintiri’s ambition.
One of the PDP governors who spoke on the Adamawa race last week had warned that Fintiri’s ambition was a possible wrong signal to other speakers.
“The ambition of the acting governor is very immoral and uncalled for. Apart from the wrong signals it might send to other speakers, it would alter the equation the party is looking at. It is a case of the devil and the deep blue sea.
“But as a sitting governor, there is no way it could be mentioned to him pointedly that he should not run,” he said.
But the acting governor is poised to fight back, it was learnt. In a move seen as plan B, Fintiri has already given indications to nine of the aspirants that he would back one of them. The nine aspirants who signed a protest letter against waiver for Ribadu, Marwa , Gundiri and Modibbo are Dr Umar Ardo, Senator Abubakar Girei, Dr Idi Hong, Alhaji Awwal Tukur and Ahmed Gulak.
Others are Aliyu Kama , Jerry Kundisi, James Bawa and Andrawa Shawa.
It was gathered that these nine aspirants will leave for Yola today in a chartered flight provided by Fintiri. They are to address the Joel Madaki-led state executive committee of the PDP at 3 pm today.
Although details of Fintiri’s plans were sketchy last night, a source close to the nine aspirants confided in our correspondent that the acting governor would facilitate a hasty consensus arrangement that will throw up one aspirant to run against the trio of Ribadu, Marwa and Modibbo
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