Some voters in Jigawa State – North-west Nigeria, said they are optimistic about the resolve of the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, to tackle the problems, residents of the state face if he becomes president.
During a campaign rally in Dutse, the capital of the state, on Saturday, Mr Tinubu promised to improve the living conditions of residents of the largely agrarian state through the provision of better healthcare, security, and agricultural development.
The rally was attended by thousands of APC supporters, governors, lawmakers party chieftains from the North-west region – the stronghold of the ruling All Progressives Congress.
“Every hope you have will be renewed, you will get good healthcare and prosperity, Mr Tinubu said at the campaign venue after receiving a rousing welcome from party supporters who converged in Dutse from across the 27 local government areas,” Mr Tinubu said.
“Jigawa you have accepted me as one of you. Nagode (thank you) God will honour you and bless you with prosperity.”
“Starting in February, if you have your permanent voter’s cards come out and vote for me as the President when you do that you vote for progress, and development, you vote for agricultural business, you vote for constant electricity and good life and better health care and good education.
“Nigeria will see progress, we will end violence, kidnapping and violent killings and ramson taking I assured you. You will be able to go to the farm two times in a season,” Mr Tinubu said.
The former governor of Lagos also received into the APC governorship candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in Jigawa, Abdullahi Tsoho, who defected to the APC with several candidates of the party.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate of the Kaugama constituency in the state assembly election also defected to the APC with his supporters during the campaign.
Jigawa has one of the highest numbers of out-of-school children. Its health infrastructures are mostly broken, and it has perhaps the worst rate of maternal and infant mortality in the country. Maternal mortality in the state is 174 deaths per 100,000 live births, a recent survey in 2021 revealed.
The state was ranked as the third poorest state in Nigeria based on the Multidimensional Poverty Index (2022) report recently released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).
Some residents who spoke to our reporter expressed optimism that the presidential candidate if elected will address the numerous challenges facing them in the state.
One of them, a tea vendor at the popular Yan Tifa market, Yellow Maishayi, said he is hopeful that the presidential candidate will sustain the cash transfer programme initiated by President Muhammadu Buhari, targeting poor people in the state.
“I am wishing him well, and hope that if he is elected, he will address the problem of poverty and sustain the cash transfer programme, open the land borders in the state and bring prosperity to the country.
“Hoping that he will help small business owners like myself give support to the businesses in the state, even though, I was not a beneficiary of any of the APC empowerment programmes, I hope to be one in the future, the tea vendor said.
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“I have hope that he means what he said. I know him as an experienced politician who has held different positions and will use his experience to address all the problems in the state,” Abdulmumini Sa’adu, a voter who attended the rally, said.
“Leadership deserve leaders like him, he has done it before that is why I have trust in him because he knows all the technics to be used in solving common problems.
“My hope is for the election to be conducted peacefully and for my governorship candidate Umar Namadi and all other contestants under the APC in Jigawa to be declared winners in the elections.
“I have satisfied with the APC’s administration from the state level to the federal government that’s why I am supporting them, the insecurity is something that is being addressed and we in Jigawa are grateful our state is safe under governor Muhammad Badaru Abubakar’s commitment, Mr Sa’adu said.
Another resident of the state, Illiyasu Jaudi, said if the presidential candidate of the APC is sincere in his promises, then God will help him to deliver on them.
“My take on the promises of what the presidential candidate made is to pray for him to May Allah give him the strength to fulfil all the promises.
“If God gave him the mandate he will actualise the promises because whatever good a leader intended to do to his followers, once he has good intentions in his mind, God will help him actualise his wish”, Mr Jaudi a voter from Jigawa Tsada ward said.
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