By Al-Amin Ciroma
“Don’t throw stones at your neighbors if your own windows are glass.” -Benjamin Franklin
We are compelled to initiate this response as a rejoinder in the interest of truth and our obligation to enlighten the general public on the subject matter.
Recall that on the 23rd of May, 2022, an article was published in the Daily Trust, signed by one Abdulkarim Haruna Gwale, on behalf of a purported ‘Concerned Kano Citizens,’ titled “Kano Central Senatorial Contest In The Eyes Of The Storm.”
In the said article, the author struggled and attempted a blatant, shameless, and unabashed reinterpretation and revisionism of the truth with a clear and unhidden distortion of facts. A lot of disturbing issues stand out in the said article; thus, the deliberate vilification of the person of His Excellency, Alhaji Abdulsalam Abdulkareem Zaura (A.A. Zaura).
It is clear that the authors and sponsors of the article failed to hide their loathing and repugnance towards Alhaji Zaura. They described him as incompetent for the job of Kano Central Senatorial position, simply because they saw it clear that his bearings in the system were far better than what was expected.
They went further to roguishly and mischievously reawaken and resurrect the dead matter of the forgone investigation by the EFCC, in a case that was already laid to rest in favour of A. A. Zaura. Even when the case was brought against him in 2019 by the EFCC, in a petition said to be failed by one Qatar businessman against Mr. Zaura, it all ended in a hallucination because the prosecution failed to present the complainant to the court, and also failed to prove beyond any reasonable doubt that Mr. Zaura committed such an offence. Consequently, he was discharged and acquitted for lack of proof.
It would have been better for both the authors and the sponsors of the ill-article to consider the fact that they are living in a glass house, so throwing stones at their opponent could be detrimental!
The same person they are trying very hard to launder his image and project him as a messier or “infallible” is facing a series of investigations by the authorities, which is a known fact! The writers failed to be reminded that Senator Lado has been under fire by the EFCC, and yet went ahead to presume they are holier than thou!
I am sure my readers can recall the dirty deals of the financial scandals of the Malabo contract scam, which involved the so-called ‘Ladon Alheri.’ Even the constituency project that gave birth to the ‘Gadar Lado’ in Kano, which is a federal government project, is full of financial misappropriation in its construction.
At this point, Lado is very much aware that he cannot face himself to proclaim that he is innocent of all the uncountable number of petitions labeled against him at the Small and Medium Enterprises Development of Nigeria (SMEDAN).
So, the article in its entirety lacks the merit for any person with a fair bit of intellectuality to comprehend its meaning. It only succeeded in exposing the authors’ ignorance of what has been happening in the politics of Kano Central Senatorial Zone. It may be better if they had written a plea on behalf of their principal to cajole His Excellency Alhaji Abdulsalam Abdulkareem Zaura to kindly consider their choice and not this style of robbing Peter to pay Paul!
Now, putting the records straight, A. A. Zaura is standing in as an established young man, with full capacity to lead his constituency and take it to the promised land. Even before venturing into the politics of the day, Zaura has been a household name not only in his dear state of Kano, but in the whole of the north!
His philanthropy is second to none. He touches the lives of the less privileged. Taking into consideration that his underpinning home of solace, the A. A. Zaura Foundation, has been on its feet for more than two decades, giving society more and more succor.
Countless times, even before he came into the ruling APC, Zaura proved himself to be a cheerful public servant. He wholeheartedly looked at his immediate society and started his projects vibrantly by giving the youths hope in life, lifting up the hands of women and the destitute. These are known facts across the board.
In his own way, Alhaji Zaura became one of the government’s most vocal supporters. He stood firm and was still standing by His Excellency Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje. At countless times, Governor Ganduje himself describes Abdulsalam Zaura as ‘Zauran Kanawa,’ ”Zauran Alheri,’ etc., not for anything, but for his magnanimity, nobility, big-heartedness, and generosity to the people of Kano State.
It is unnecessary to present a list of hundreds of endorsements and support that Alhaji Zaura gave to the people of Kano, to the state structure of the ruling party, and to all three senatorial zones in the state. But it is sufficient for anyone, especially the inexperienced writers of the unscrupulous article that have been nipped in the bud, to clearly see the handwriting on the wall!
The same Senator, Basheer Garba Mohammed Lado, is someone that people would like to doff their hats for, particularly before he was fired by President Muhammadu Buhari from the National Agency for Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP). Nigerians are still asking questions about his sudden dismissal by the president. But the facts are on the table and will be revealed!
Not only was Lado fired from NAPTIP, but he was also fired from the Humanitarian ministry following the discovery of his shady deals and financial scandals.There are many proofs of Lado’s secret ways of life, which point to the fact that he is not only an aberrant but not fit to run or spearhead any public office, since it is proven that he cannot be trusted with public funds.
Therefore, the unwarranted attack on the person of Alhaji Abdulsalam Abdulkareem Zaura makes one very sad! It is sad because the article shows an ultimate lack of understanding of how politics itself works.
For the sake of clarity, Alhaji Zaura is law-abiding. He went through all the protocols of screening and is very loyal to all the structures of APC, both at the state and national levels. Above all, he supersedes people like Senator Lado in crowd pulling and exposure, not only in Kano Central, Kano State, but the entire northern Nigeria!
Therefore, the so-called ‘Concerned Kano Citizens’ need to appreciate the fact that the interest of the ostensible narrow-mindedness they seem to be championing is not necessarily the interest of the Kano Central Senatorial Zone.
And finally, if they think they can intimidate Alhaji Zaura by the so-called bunch of projects their principal, Lado, is said to have executed from 2011-2015 during his tenure, it is rather more treacherous to write such an imprudent and senseless article in order to mislead people. It is not going to help them because Kano people are wiser!
Ciroma writes from Mundubawa quarters, Kano.