By Ismail Musa
Leadership is by far a game of performance than that of appearances as philosophers will have us believe. It is almost impossible for the dogged efforts of selfless leaders who have made it a duty to assuage the pains of the masses through viable policies and important projects to go unnoticed. Although, leaders need not wait for praises from their people for doing the job they have been elected to do, however, in a democracy such as ours where leadership has been reduced into an avenue for self-enrichment and aggrandizement, appreciating the good works of leaders who have chosen servitude over rulership becomes very important.
If not for anything, to help them see beyond the sycophant ramblings of opportunists and the bitter criticism of opponents. It is on the strength of this that I join other well-meaning Nigerians to congratulate Barrister Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar, my governor for bagging the prestigious Vanguard 2017 Governor of the Year Award in recognition of his many people-oriented programmes that are transforming the fortunes of the people of Bauchi. Anyone who is familiar with the Vanguard Awards knows that it celebrates only the best who have made it a point of duty to better the lot of their people. The awards have developed into the barometer for measuring the performance of Nigerian governors that have gone the extra length to put the people first.
One only needs to look at the performance in office, of all the past winners to understand that Vanguard maintains a strict vetting code and this makes the award prestigious. It represents duty and is undoubtedly presented only those who have been unquestionably outstanding in delivering dividends of democracy to the people of their state. Without question, Governor Abubakar represents everything that the people of Bauchi have been lacking in a governor since the return of democracy in 1999. His clear approach to governance is legendary. Except from enemies of Bauchi state, probably the camp of those still licking their wounds for the sound beating they received from him at the 2015 polls which brought an end to the inglorious looting era, it will be hard for any right-thinking human being not to commend the efforts of Governor Abubakar in transforming the fortunes of the state despite the paucity of funds. Bauchi is today wearing a beautiful look all thanks to the massive investment in road development that has seen the construction of numerous roads within the Bauchi metropolis, and those linking the capital and the rest of the state.
The story is the same with all other critical sectors of the state. In education for instance, since embarking on a state-wide tour where he was brought face to face with rot in the sector, governor Abubakar declared a state of emergency in the sector. A stroll around Bauchi state and the environs today, will reveal public schools that have been wholly transformed from their hitherto sorry state and have been galvanized to provide only the kind of education that the governor believes will help the children of Bauchi compete favourably with their counterparts all over Nigeria and even beyond. This strong momentum has been retained in other sectors such as health where huge counterpart funds have been contributed into International Organisations’ assisted initiatives that have provided the needed health covers to the teeming people of Bauchi for whom access to health has previously been completely absent.
Other areas like power, human capital development, security, etc. have also been touched by the Midas limbs of the indefatigable governor and so, it didn’t come as a surprise to all of us in Bauchi who are actually after good governance that the governor has also caught the eye of a reputable newspaper organisation such as Vanguard. The truth is, records don’t lie. Anyone in doubt about the impact of the governor since assuming office in 2015 need just board a vehicle to Bauchi and see for themselves the wonders of a man whose calling we believe was truly echoed by God; a man who has crashed all the planks of follies that past administrations have positioned as parameters for the measurement of their non-existent impacts.
The most interesting thing about our Mohammed Abubakar is that he goes about delivering on his mandate in the humblest of manners. Never does he point fingers at the past nor does he bare down on the present. This perhaps is the reason why all his lieutenants have also been wired tick to his approach and can be seen working diligently to support their principal to give to the people that which is due them.
The award this year which I contend is the most keenly contested also gives the governor a certain kind of elevation among his peers. To beat the likes of H.E Okezie Victor Ikpeazu of Abia, H.E Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of Kano, H.E Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa and H.E Darius Dickson Ishaku of Taraba state considering their stellar performance in 2017, governor Mohammed must have performed excellently. Let me assure the governor that the people of Bauchi on whose behalf he has performed the deeds that have brought him this recognition are proud of him.
They are very happy that the world has seen what he has brought to them and are only too happy to repay his trust come 2019. We in Bauchi are only waiting patiently to return His Excellency come 2019. No electorate will be careless enough to allow a rare gem such as you to pass through their fingers. We have seen the lies of those contending for your office and I assure you that the people are poised to reject them.
All we ask and pray is for you to take this award and use it as the needed motivation to continue doing that which has endeared you not only to the people of Bauchi, but reputable organisations like Vanguard. It is my sincere belief that with you at helm of affairs in Bauchi, only good things that border on the all-round development of the people and infrastructure will be attributed to the state.
– Musa write from Bauchi State