Posted by Stella Iyaji | 10 February 2019 | 1,717 times
For the 2019 elections, though there are several parties taking part in the elections, most Nigerians are more concerned about the two major political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party, and do not take lightly any comment made about them or their candidates, especially those flying their flags in the presidential elections. In this case, President Muhammadu Buhari for the APC and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar for the PDP.
It is therefore not surprising that a statement by Kano State Governor Abdullahi Ganduje, has continued to generate reactions across the country, especially with the elections just a few days away. Kano has always been a stronghold of President Muhammadu Buhari and he has always won there overwhelmingly in all the presidential elections even the ones in which he failed to make it to the Aso Villa.
In November, 2018, Governor Ganduje promised the candidate of the APC, President Buhari “a minimum of five million votes”. He has continued to repeat this chest-thumping promise at political events.
Speaking at a grand rally in Kano to welcome a former governor of the state and former minister of education, Ibrahim Shekarau and other Peoples Democratic Party’s decampees into the ruling All Progressives Congress, Ganduje had said, “let us talk about Kano. APC is the only party in Kano. We have the highest number of Party members. Our effort is not only to win Governorship, Presidential, National Assembly and State House of Assembly elections, our intention is to provide the highest number of votes for APC in Nigeria.
“If you remember, we promised Mr President a minimum of five million votes. Kano is the home of the progressives. Our great leader, Malam Aminu Kano, was a progressive. Abubakar Rimi was a progressive….What do you expect from Kano apart from progressive government, administration and voting? That is why we are all united to give Mr President over five million votes from Kano State”.
Based on INEC data, the total number of registered voters in Kano State is 5,457,747. Number of PVCs collected so far is 4.7 million while 700, 000 are yet to be collected.
At the moment, there are 700,000 PVCs still uncollected and it is unlikely that all the cards will be picked up before Saturday, February 16, the date of the presidential election. Therefore, the assumption that all 5.4 million registered voters will have their PVCs is false.
Among those who have collected PVCs, it is unlikely that all 4.7 million voters will turn out as that will amount to 100 per cent voter turnout, a feat that has never been achieved in any state of the country, or even in advanced democracies. And even if all 4.7 million people do, that will also not give Ganduje, his proposed 5 million votes.
For Governor Ganduje to fulfil his promise of five million votes for the president, he has assumed that all registered voters will cast their votes on the day of the election and that Buhari will secure 92.5 per cent of the votes cast. The highest percentage the president has ever secured in the state is 38 per cent, which was the election that gave him the Presidency in 2015.
Based on available statistics, a 100 per cent voter turnout is almost impossible anywhere in the world. Even in advanced climes like the United States, voter turnout is usually around 60 per cent. We cannot also rule out the issue of voided votes, which are recorded almost in every election.
Governor Ganduje’s promise to Buhari is exaggerated. It cannot be redeemed because it is totally unrealistic and should not have been made at all.
•Excerpted from a Daily Trust report
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