BY VICTOR BUORO, ABUJA – Emerging facts on the funding of the rally by the All Progressives Congress (APC), organized in Sokoto on Saturday and coordinated by the former governor of the state, Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko in support of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration have been exposed.
This was just as it gathered that in spite of the contribution of N200million by two northern governors and the rented crowd from five states, the Wamakko rally was still less than what Governor Aminu Tambuwal that defected last week Tuesday gathered.
The rally which was also aimed at extending support to the Senator Wamakko few days after the defection of his political son, Governor Tambuwal from the APC to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The gathering, which was also meant to show that Governor Tambuwal is a paper weight in the APC affairs in Sokoto state, attracted unimpressive thousands of members across the three states of Sokoto, Kebbi and Zamfara and was addressed by Senator Wamakko, the Deputy Governor, Ahmed Aliyu Sokoto and Senator Ibrahim Abdullahi Gobi, among other party chieftains.
As gathered, the embattled Senator Wamakko wanted to show his political strengths and power in the state through a well-organized and sponsored political rally from Sultan Abubakar Saddiq International Airport to the ancient city of Sokoto.
Earlier, the Police had denied receiving any information about the gathering just as the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has banned all political rallies aimed at seeking political relevance till after the final release of timetable for the political activities across the country.
Sources within the organizers of the rally in Sokoto confided that the Governors Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi and Abdul’azeez Yari of Zamfara, were contacted by Senators Wamakko and Adamu Aleiro to pick the responsibility of ensuring the success of the event.
Specifically, the two governors’ involvement was sought in the areas of catering and giving financial support, that included the payment of the allowances of the rented crowds in the city.
It was furthered gathered that the Kebbi state government was asked to foot all the bill of hiring vehicles and allowances of the participants while his Zamfara counterpart was requested to take over the bill of live media coverage, security and airport issues.
It also gathered that initially, over N352million was budgeted, but had to be pruned down to N250million to reduce the burden on the two states which eventually donated N100million each.
As expected, part of the money was released by the Zamfara state government on Wednesday, while Kebbi state government was expected to release their fund through Wamakko, who chaired the rally committee.
At the rally, Senator Wamakko only rained abuses as well as dished out misinformation that did not sell to members of the public unlike Governor Tambuwal who addressed issues of national importance to justify his defection to the PDP.
Worse of it, it was later discovered that the organisers of the Wamakko’s rally had to resort to using pictorial and video clips of Governor Tambuwal’s rally to claim as if it was its own outing.
Governor Tambuwal defected to PDP last Wednesday following requests by his supporters and political followers for him to dump his former party, APC over continue maltreatment, injustice and lack of federal projects in the state.
As a result, 17 members of the State House of Assembly, former commissioners and senior political appointees all followed him to PDP.
Amongst those that followed Tambuwal to the PDP were close allies of Senator Aliyu Magatakarda Wamakko that include Alhaji Mukhtar Maigona, Alhaji Isah Bajini Galadanci, Alhaji Muhammadu Dan madamin Isa, Alhaji Mu’azu Zabira, Alhaji Muhammadu Dangwaggo and many of the youths supporters.