By Raphael Ekpang
The Kaduna state governorship candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) in the rescheduled March 18, gubernatorial poll, Senator Suleiman Othman Hunkuyi, has called on the people of Kaduna State to shun divisive politics and be careful of antics of individuals and groups of persons bent on religion and tribal sentiment in order to win election or retain power.
Hunkuyi reiterated his stand on inclusive government that will see him carry everybody along irrespective of age, religion, tribe and language differences if he wins the March 18, 2023 governorship election.
Hunkuyi who made this known in an interview with journalists said the claims and counter claims that some clergymen have endorsed certain candidate for governorship election is a distraction aimed at taking away the mind of people from the ills of the All Progressive Congress government in the state.
‘I think you are aware of a letter by Kaduna State CAN Chairman, which endorsed the PDP governorship candidate. We also have audio where some Muslim clergymen have also endorsed the candidate of APC for governorship election in Kaduna State.
“Where do we go from here, where a governor that will emerge after the poll will be tagged a governor for Christians or a governor for Muslims in this metropolitan state?”
Recall that a letter in a social media, allegedly written by the Chairman, Rev. John Joseph Hayab, Christian Association of Nigeria, Kaduna State Chapter, has endorsed PDP candidate, Isah Ashiru for the next governorship election. Some Muslims clergymen have also allegedly endorsed APC candidate, Sani Uba.
However, Hayab in a reaction to the alleged letter said he neither wrote or authorized anybody to write such letter. He called on the general public to disregard the purported letter and describe it as fake news.
Hunkuyi said Kaduna people should be wise enough to discern what is going on as the governorship and state house of assembly election comes up in few days time.
According to Hunkuyi, the rain of mal-administration of APC in the state falls on everyone, both Christians and Muslims.
Hunkuyi said Kaduna State is known as the centre of learning and he does not expect any sensible person whether citizen or resident of the state to be carried away by religious and tribal sentiments, the line some individuals drawn with the sole aim of winning election.
Senator Hunkuyi who said he is more experienced and knowledgeable in terms of complexity of the state than other candidates vying for the position of the governor of Kaduna State, dismissed allegation that he is also running on Muslim-Muslim ticket.
Hunkuyi who described the allegation as laughable, said a committee was set up to select his running mate and at the end of the exercise, an Adara man, Dr Sani Mazawaje was chosen. Dr. Mazawaje is a Christian, contrary to the allegation.
The NNPP governorship candidate, Senator Suleiman Hunkuyi, said he believes in the oneness of the state and Kaduna should be treated as metropolitan state where nobody is treated as second class citizen for the purpose of peace and unity; progress, growth and development.
Hunkuyi has vowed to run an inclusive government, review several policies of the outgoing Governor Nasir El-Rufai with the aim of revising some of the policies considered as anti-people and anti-progress. Some of the Hunkuyi promises include, free education from primary to secondary school level, review downward of recently increased school fees of state-owned tertiary institutions, (university, polytechnic, colleges of education, school of health among others), tackle security challenges through various means including constabulary system; restore sacked teachers and other workers without payment of their entitlements, bring back the disengaged traditional rulers among others.
The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC had last Wednesday re-scheduled the governorship and state house of assembly to March 18, 2023.