Shehu Sani: Separating Activism from Governance
By Adamu Hayatu
World over, personalities always make a choice on the path to tread, this part and the manner in which such individuals pursue their goals define their personality.
For those who have taken the part of governance, the aim, as always, is strive to tackle the myriad of issues arising from their decisions; how to assuage the feelings and yearnings of the people and leave a lasting legacy over those they have their privilege and that of God, to govern.
On the other hand, those who taken the part of activism normally do not see anything good in the governance process and that is why activism and governance have always been at logger heads from time immemorial.
The scenario on one hand showcase why Senator representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District, Shehu Sani do not see anything good in government either at the Federal or the state level.
However, unlike other activists that have perfected their trade and continue to stick to their comfort zone, Sani has been driven by materialistic tendencies to venture into a terrain he is not comfortable with and we the people of his constituency are the worst for it.
A job of a Senator entails lobbying and diplomacy towards enticing projects to his constituency. What projects have Senator Sani brought to the people of his constituency, none up till date, except creating a tension filled environment in the party that offered him the platform (the APC) after so many failed attempts and endangering the chances of the party in the coming general elections.
For those that might not be aware of the antecedents of the senator, this is someone that promised to work for the generality of the people during his campaigns, but not long after coming on board he became the architect of destabilization, and becoming the opposition within the ruling party, criticizing what the party stands for.
It was the member of the state House of Assembly, representing Igabi West constituency, Honourable Yusuf Zailani that put the person of Senator Sani succinctly when he told journalists at a stakeholders meeting at the party secretariat recently that he does not consider Senator Sani as a member of the All Progressives Congress, APC in the state.
Asked why he said so, he stated that the Senator remained suspended and until the suspension is reversed he is still out of the party.
He however continued to the root of the matter when he pinned on the embattled Senator of battling to share appointments with the state Governor.
According to him, the senator has about ten aides working for him and nobody influenced how these people were appointed and nobody even know them, “but how can a Senator asked to be ceded some appointments by the State government. He want to be consulted for all appointments coming from his Senatorial district, have you heard of that before” rhetorically, he asked.
For all keen observers of Kaduna political landscape, the administration of His excellency Mallam Nasir El-Rufai was even yet to kick off when Senator Shehu Sani started criticizing the government because of his selfish ambition. One would have thought that for a government and party that rode into power on the mantra of change, its adherents would give themselves time to settle down and even work together to deliver true dividends of good governance for the teaming masses that came out to vote for the party on all fronts in 2015.
That was not to be, as early as the government set into motion, Sani constituted himself into a one-man opposition against El-Rufai’s policies in the state, which many, including APC stakeholders in the state were not happy with the Senator.
Unfortunately for Sani, Kaduna Central which Sani represents at the Senate, are well educated, well enlightened to be played this sort of gutter politics and have a field day. It is also a place for sophisticated political elites and businessmen who would not be carried away by Senator Sani’s shenanigans. Our sources revealed that many people, within and outside the party, have called him to order but he is committed to his path; to make trouble and destabilize the party.
The situation is even more worrisome because this is also the first time a Senator from the zone, who is in the same party with the government at the state level and the centre would be squaring up with the governor from his own party publicly over state policy matters, it then shows that Sani is committed to denting the image of the party which has just won election on popular mandate and bring it to disrepute.
Since then, the battle line has been drawn; those loyal to the party and respect the leadership of the party in the state and Sani who do not see anything good in the party or its policies that is aimed at taking the people away from poverty.
The development came to a head when those committed to the ideals of the party cannot take it any longer and decided to suspend Senator Sani from the party for 11 months, for criticising State’s policies publicly and for portraying the governor in a bad light before the local and international communities.
During the suspension, instead of turning back on his negative committed past and seek forgiveness, Senator Sani continued in his ways as though he is bigger than the party. This is almost impossible in a democratic setting like ours where all well meaning Nigerians know that he could not have gotten into any position without using the ladder provided by our party.
It is this development that led to the indefinite suspension of the Senator. However one is at times confused by the character of Shehu Sani because someone that does not regard the party as having any power over him is worried and running around the whole state and Abuja that he has been suspended by the same institution that he so much detest.
It is on record that Senator Sani does not regard any executive of the party in the state as worthy to hold any position they are presently occupying, he believes they are not up to his standard, but these are the same people that worked tirelessly, day and night to ensure the success of the APC SAK that defeated the then ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
It is El-Rufai’s Special Adviser on Political Matters, Mallam Uba Sani, who recently captured the recalcitrant nature of Sani in a recent interview.
Uba advised Senator Sani to stop his political tantrums and grow up from being childish, saying Sani was only shouting foul because of his suspension from the party in the state.
He further said: “It has become imperative to set the records straight. Everyone knows that it is Shehu Sani that has spent his whole time and energy attacking the Governor personally and opposing every of the government policy. The state government has ignored his tantrums while the party has acted to uphold discipline. Shehu Sani should keep the government out of his woes.
“We are beneficiaries of democracy and we championed an open society. We respect democratic values and will never resort to unconstitutional means of settling differences. He should be careful not to make wild and unsubstantiated claims against the party and the leadership of the state.
To make matters worse, Shehu Sani has done nothing of decisional difference to exempt himself from the profilgate status quo in the NASS. He, like Ben Bruce only regale his followers by reeling out sanctimonious parables.
As it stand, Senator Sani remains suspended from the APC and as 2019 approaches only time will tell, if his distraction of the party will favor him.
Lives in Kaduna
Can be reached on Twitter @AHayatu