... Always Staying on Top of The News

Bauchi Governor Mohammed and the changing narratives, five years later

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State

By Sani Danaudi Mohammed

Bauchi State is one of the 19 northern states that make up the Federation’s 36 states. It has two distinct vegetation zones: Sudan savannah and Sahel savannah.It is undeniable that the State has fallen behind in terms of economic, infrastructure, and educational development, despite its strategic location in the North East and, by extension, the country as a whole.

Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed has the profile of a risen phoenix, a cool, calculating executrix who appears to have plotted almost with precision. His political career began in 2007, when he defeated the then-mighty Ahmad Adamu Mu’azu, who served as the Executive Governor of Bauchi State from 1999 to 2007. Former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan appointed him Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, and he has since triumphed amidst Nigeria’s complex politics.

After leaving office as Minister in 2015, he was elected Governor of Bauchi State in 2019, defeating the previous Governor, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar. Although he came from an opposition party, his victory over an incumbent Governor, who now wields federal political power, demonstrated that he came strong and prepared for the challenges of governance ahead.

He promised to restore and rebuild Bauchi State as a Pearl of Tourism, as preached by the late Sa’adu Zungur, and as the state from which the first Nigerian Prime Minister, Late Abubakar Tafawa Balewa of blessed memory, served. The state’s continued incarceration has been attributed to the previous administrations’ lack of continuity, despite the fact that former Governor Mu’azu made investments in vital infrastructures like urban and rural development.

From this vantage point, Kauran Bauchi was able to see things more clearly, particularly in relation to his home state of Bauchi.Being the Chairman of the PDP Governors Forum, he is a high-ranking member of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party and has been working nonstop to resolve the crisis that the party is currently facing. Since he took office five years ago, Bala’s transformational leadership model has played a significant role in transforming the face of the Bauchi State Government, despite the diminishing resources at his disposal.

The political environment in Bauchi State is rich but complicated, and candidates are not elected by wealth or power. Two former governors of the state have lost elections to the senate: Mallam Isa Yuguda lost to the late Mallam Ali Wakili in 2015, and Ahmad Adamu Mu’azu lost to the current governor, Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed, in 2007. Not one of the aforementioned endured the winter of the knowledgeable and politically astute Bauchi electorates, despite the culture of political power and money politics that has dominated Nigeria.

Under his leadership, the Bauchi metropolitan city has seen significant urban renewal and growth through the construction, rehabilitation, and dualization of numerous roads.In 2010, he proposed the doctrine of necessity to be adopted, ending the political crisis in the nation and appointing former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan as acting president by National Assembly resolution. Numerous people have since forecast that he might serve in politics for a longer time. The key components of Kauran Bauchi’s success over the past five years have been accountability and transparency in governance.

Senator Kashim Shettima, the vice president of Nigeria, recently dedicated a new government house, dubbed one of the best if not the best in the nation. To further promote trade and investment and establish Bauchi as the Northeast’s economic hub, a massive trade show was also concluded. Wunti and Central Market are the locations of two flyovers that are being built in Bauchi to ease traffic and improve the city. These come after he built roads throughout the state’s 20 local governments, some of which are still under construction and a sizable portion of which has already been finished.

Another important area that attracted attention was the state health care system, since several new facilities have been built throughout Bauchi State to supplement the ones that already exist. A total of 2500 housing units have been built throughout the five Emirates of Bauchi State in an effort to provide citizens—especially civil servants—with affordable housing. Educational facilities have been upgraded, and classroom blocks have been constructed in each of the state’s primary and secondary schools.In order to restore Bauchi State to its rightful position, Kaura City is currently being built at the former airport.

Beyond pens and paper, he recognised and organised an Army of Sheep, which, operating under the banner Bauchi Sabuwa (The New Bauchi State), successfully reshaped the state’s whole appearance. To help him set up the direction of government policy and determine how to accomplish it with the limited resources at hand, he has appointed highly qualified, dynamic, and competent individuals as commissioners and heads of agencies. He has restored the power of the people to make decisions for the majority, in contrast to earlier periods when a small group of privileged individuals did so. He prevailed because of his government’s reconnection with the people, especially the voters, in spite of the political gang up by some powerful people who opposed his wish for a second term.

He recently visited Yankari Game Reserve as part of his ambitious plan to upgrade Bauchi State and increase its potential to attract tourists from around the globe. The likelihood that he will construct an amusement park that unites kids during holiday seasons and fan fair events is strong given his background as a former FCT minister. Since Tafawa Balewa Tomb has been portrayed as a national monument, there are also plans to upgrade the tomb. Building a ring road to further relieve traffic in the city and lessen the number of trucks entering it is Kauran Bauchi’s 24/7 endeavour, despite the limited resources at his disposal.

To date, Governor Bala’s leadership potential and pedigree have helped to rebuild the state’s ties with the outside world both nationally and internationally. He has remained extremely motivated and focused as he advances at the national forums, in addition to running for the PDP presidential ticket in the 2023 elections. With his extensive experience and political acumen, it is not surprising that he became the Chairman of the opposition PDP Governors forum. As PDP chair, he has started efforts to bring the opposing factions together so they can work together to face the challenges that lie ahead.Even the ruling APC is interested in collaborating closely with him because he is currently the Secretary of the Nigerian economic team, demonstrating his broad acceptance across party lines.

His emphasis on youth inclusion in government governance and decision-making has placed the State on a pedestrian bridge that Bauchians are now crossing with their eyes closed.The newly built Government House, which features an inscription listing all 20 local government areas of the state, is particularly striking. At night, white lightning has transformed the state into a stunning and alluring arena. Through the recent evacuation of containers from major Bauchi roads, he has continued to bring the state into order, reducing ongoing security risks and enhancing the city’s already stunning natural beauty, positioning it as the tourism pearl.

Every country in the world is facing insecurity issues, but none more so than Northern Nigeria, where banditry has taken on a frightening new dimension. As the State’s chief security officer, Bala leverages his vision to strengthen Yan Danga security groups and collaborates closely with the Army, Nigerian Police, and DSS to address security issues both inside and outside the city centre. Currently the most tranquil state in the nation, Bauchi State continues to draw in foreign and domestic investment. He has succeeded in fostering an environment that encourages business, especially small and large enterprises, in addition to providing the necessary attention to security.

Owing to its peaceful environment, which allows farmers to access their farmlands and harvest without fear of kidnapping, the State is progressively becoming the agricultural centre of the country. Farmers in many northern states find it challenging to prepare for farming due to temporal challenges; Bauchi, on the other hand, is taking advantage of this advantage to invest in agriculture. From taking office, the governor has supported agriculture greatly by giving farmers free or heavily discounted farm equipment and fertiliser.

Importantly, his infrastructure revolution has benefited rural areas greatly, making it easier for them to transport their farm produce to surrounding markets and the city centre. More than half of the people who made the Hajj journey across the kingdom of Saudi Arabia are farmers, according to records. This is an explanation of how the state government’s assistance is helping Bauchians become more productive in their thoughts, which is a desirable and positive development. Nothing that he does is unnoticed, as evidenced by the occasional visitor to the state who attests to the fact that, beyond politics, Governor Bala has dramatically transformed the state’s appearance in practically every area.

A new look has been added to the impassable Magama-Gumau road that connects Bauchi and Kaduna State via Saminaka. Among the numerous projects completed under his direction are the general hospitals being built in Gumau and Rishi, both in Toro local government, the Gel Jaule to Lame, Mararraban Ganye Road, Rishi to Tulu, and Rimin Zayan to Dass local government. Despite his background in both the public and private sectors, Engr. Joshua Titus Sanga FNSE’s appointment as Director General of the Bauchi Public and Procurement Bureau enhanced his achievements in Toro and the State at large.

As the governor is serving his second term, there are rumours that he is aiming for the presidency of Nigeria in 2027. Some people believe he should go back to the senate, where his political career started. If Senator Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed is chosen as the PDP nominee, I believe he has the background and political connections to be the next president.Given his qualifications as a former senator from the Federal Republic of Nigeria, a reputable journalist, a former minister of the Federal Capital Territory, and the current executive governor of Bauchi State for a second term, the likelihood that he will emerge as the 11th Senate’s president is very high.

In the next three years, Kauran Bauchi’s goal of rewriting history appears to be only getting started, and expectations are that he will finish his tenure on a high note.

Danaudi, a public affairs analyst in Bauchi, can be reached at danaudicomrade@gmail.com

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.