As the race to the Dougirei government house Yola commences with the lifting of the campaign veil by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), four amazons are brazing to take the mantle of leadership from incumbent governor Muhammadu Umaru Jibrilla Bindow.
In this report, Austin Ajayi, x-rays some of the unique qualities that these women of timbre posses that will make them a force to reckon with, as the quest to occupy Dugirei seat of power gathers steam.
In Nigeria, Politics is rightly or wrongly believed to be the men’s exclusive preserve as the men, due to their firm grip on the polity and by extension, their financial muscle always call the shot from their vantage position. Save for the 1987 Benji conference, that position would have remained so, especially with the seeming disadvantages that stares the Nigerian woman in the face. But in Adamawa State, four women are braving the challenge in order to tell the men that “what a man can do, a woman can do better”.
The exploits of the Adamawa amazons were a replication of the feats by their counterparts of southern extraction who have been blazing the trail in the political scheme of the country.
In the northern part of Nigeria, women are not usually accorded the leverage to assail political offices due to religious and cultural attachments. The scenario became poignantly clear when President Buhari made the egregiously famous comment that “my wife belongs to the kitchen and the other room.”
As the 2019 general election gets closer, the governorship election will be a battle between the men and the women, as for the first time in the history of Adamawa, women not only want to be seen, but heard in the political firmament of the state.
In Adamawa State, twenty-eight candidates will be maneuvering to out play each other to win the election and occupy the coveted seat of power come 2019 general polls. Out of the number, four valiant women stand out to face the men folk in the epic battle for the control of levers of power at the highest level in the state.
A retired Nurse, Lami Musa, says she has what it takes to govern the state. Equipped with vast experience in public service, she is set to liberate Adamawa people from the poverty which bad leadership plunged the state in.
“Health care delivery will be my first priority when I become the governor of the state. I will improve the facilities in all primary and secondary health centers in the state and also improve the welfare of the workers and the entire civil service.
“If you educate your child, you have secured their future to a great extent. So I will give the educational sector the needed push for us to improve the the knowledge of our children at all levels of studies.
“I will create means where we will make agriculture a revenue generating avenue in the state thereby improving the internally generating profile, the sole dependent on allocation from the federated account will be reduced,” she said.
There is the believe that her experience in the public sector and her interaction with the people is a plus for her. Another plus for Lami Musa was that the fact that being a strong force behind youth and women empowerment will give her a strong push as she will definitely garner substantial votes from the two groups.
Rukayya Audi Shelleng
Rukayya Audi Shelleng is the flag bearer of Action Peoples Party (APP), the youngest of all the female candidates has the strong determination to lead at this level of governance.
Though still in the university, for a degree Rukayatu has some working experience that can make her succeed in this political venture believed to be the exclusive preserve for men.
At a tender age of 18, Rukayya made up her mind to be the voice of the voiceless.
The fact that Rukayya is one of the four women among 28 other cleared candidates of various political parties jostling to occupy Dougirei seat of power to steer the affairs of Adamawa is not surprising being made with a heart of the lioness.
A National Diploma holder from the Federal Polytechnic Damaturu, Rukayya is not a novice in politics and leadership; she is a member of Jamiyar Matan Arewa, chairperson of a charity organization and a traditional tittle holder of “Gimbiyar Lala” and “Alkebban Shelleng”.
A woman of honour, character and integrity, Rukayya said she has the interest of the marginalized people in Adamawa, particularly women and youths as she steps out.
She has more to say on her manifesto when governorship campaign commences in December but she added one of major priority will be Education and promise to make education free from primary to secondary school and give women and youths their pride of place.
Na’ama Wealthy Bulama
Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) Guber candidate, Na’ama Bulama, hails from Hong Local Government area of Adamawa State. Bulama is one of the amazons among the 28 governorship candidates gunning for the number one seat in Adamawa State, the Land of Beauty.
Her plans for Adamawa is for the people to be liberated from the bondage of poverty and squalor that years of bad governance has wrought on them. From her campaign slogan of a better Adamawa for all, one could see her eagerness to get Adamawa out of the woods.
More reasons why the people of Adamawa should vote Na’ama Wealthy Bulama as governor will be known when she fully reels out her plans for the state during the campaigns in December.
Elizabeth Isa Baldeino
Elizabeth Isa Baldeino is the 2019 Adamawa State flag bearer of Change Advocacy Party (CAP), the party with eye glass logo, signifying her clearer vision for the Land of Beauty.
Elizabeth a clergy and self-employed, is a graduate of Cornerstone University and Theological Seminary, Jerusalem and USA. The clergy is in the race for selfless service with the fear of God.
“I wish to serve my people in all sincerity,” said Elizabeth who will soon reel out her plans for the electorates in Adamawa.
The woman of substance who harps on integrity, reliability and transparency, is set to add colour if given the opportunity to the saying, “what a man can do, a woman can do better”. Whatever the outcome may be, women in Adamawa have proven that they are up to the challenge.