ANALYSIS: Can Mama Taraba make it? By Jaafar Jaafar

Aisha Al-Hasan

At it stands, the Taraba runoff election scheduled for Saturday, April 25, may hardly change the current reality.

Already signed, sealed and delivered in the INEC book is PDP’s Darius Ishaku polling 317,198 votes against Aisha Alhassan’s 262,386. A difference of 54,812 votes. But the canceled votes totaled 127,125.

The major reason the election was declared inconclusive was the cancellation of the whole Donga Local Government votes. Donga has a total 95,657 registered voters.

What caused the cancellation of Donga votes was some cases of election malpractices recorded in five units in the local government. Donga is unarguably a PDP stronghold. Should APC’s hopes remain alive because of Donga? No. It’s like PDP raising hope to win where they are less popular. For instance, had there any cause for runoff ballotage in the last presidential election, say because of the cancellation of Kano votes, it’ll be quite unlikely for PDP to win the runoff. Kano is APC stronghold, while Donga, nay Taraba is PDP stronghold.

Apart from 95,657 Donga votes, there are still pockets of polling units cancelled in places where Aisha Alhassan is not the favourite, findings show. The votes totaled 31,468. If you sum up the numbers, you will arrive at 127,125 registered voters.

It’s unlikely that voter turnout will be above 50 percent after accreditation. At 50 percent voter turnout, the disputed votes will shrink to about 65,000. Remember, Mama is going to the poll with a burden of 54,812 to first level the tally and then increase the tally against her rival at a battleground where her rival stands in pole position.

But some political analysts would argue that APC bigwigs in Donga, like the former deputy governor, Uba Maigari, may give APC a ray of hope. But Maigari, who recently defected from PDP to APC, lost his polling unit to PDP in the April 11 polls.

I lost hope for Mama in the election when I hear APC calling for the cancellation of the whole Taraba election, seeking fresh election as precondition for participation in the run-off.

To me, INEC only forced Mama to be the proverbial donkey resting with the burden of load on its back.

Mama has given a good fight, and her outing was really radiant, but the odds are clearly against her.


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  • staaaaaaaaaaa

    this writer didnt consider that old alignments have shifted. Previously considered strongolds are changing grounds. If this wee the case the last few days is enough to change peoples opinion, that the mood of the country is really changing. At any rate let the counts done by INEC be genuine, not desktop figures.

  • Abiye

    She would break record to be the first female governor in Nigeria. How I wish she could make it. May God grant her success at the polls tomorrow IJN. Amen.

  • Ken

    Apc cant win in Taraba! Apc should just forget Taraba and go to Imo.

    • Jack


  • altam enoch

    APC members are wasting their precious time and money for nothing.Taraba State is for Darius Ishaku already.

    • Jack

      You lost the most important point, it’s not about party but setting a precedence that a northern woman won Governorship where we reliably but falsely believe women are not allowed to be independent. As an APC die-hard, I couldn’t care if Mama contested under the People’s Party of Nigeria. Her victory will be victory for the Women and as a catalyst to women liberation movements that will be hitting Nigeria in the nearest future and it’s a worthy cause.

      • altam enoch

        You got it all wrong because having Children doesn’t necessarily make a woman a mother.

      • John

        If APC was damn serious about having the first woman Governor in Nigeria, fielding a female governorship candidate in either Kano or Sokoto state and not Taraba should have been the best bet.

        • PolyGon2013

          At least they have started from somewhere. Kano and Sokoto will follow suit.

  • Tunsj

    It will be nice to have a woman as a Governor in any state. Women should be encouraged to seek higher offices.

  • Bestman

    Guy, anything can still happen especially considering the fact that Buhari’s shining factor may play out tomorrow.
    God bless Nigeria women and bless Nigeria too.

  • burning spear


    • PolyGon2013

      What does that have to do with electing her as governor?

  • M Ajonye

    Am still struggling to understand, whether the writer’s analysis was based on cancelled votes or registered voters. If it’s based on cancelled votes, how did he come to conclusion that the turnout will be %50? Just asking!

    • Strong System

      On registered voters

  • Awarawa

    This writer has a clear unbiased knowledge of Taraba state politics. Mama Hajia is only popular in APC online media propaganda.

    • Malik Isah

      Are you still feeling sore? I have heard that before. ‘Apc media propaganda’. And then. ……?