Minister of Women Affairs, Aisha Alhassan was screened out of the APC Governorship race in Taraba. The party revealed Alhassan was not cleared because of her engagement in anti-party activities and a show of disloyalty to the party’s cause and open loyalty to a member of the opposition.
Alhassan, a former lawmaker, contested for Taraba State Governorship seat under the aegis of the APC in the 2015 elections but lost and was made the Minister of Women Affairs afterwards.
In an interview with the BBC Hausa Network on the 6th of September, 2017, Maman Taraba as she is fondly called was reported to have said;
“Atiku is my godfather even before I joined politics,” she said in Hausa. “And again, Baba Buhari did not tell us that he is going to run in 2019.”
“Let me tell you today that if Baba said he is going to contest in 2019, I swear to Allah, I will go before him and kneel and tell him that ‘Baba I am grateful for the opportunity you gave me to serve your government as a minister but Baba just like you know I will support only Atiku because he is my godfather. If Atiku said he is going to contest.”
Alhassan had revealed at the time that she is not scared of being relieved of her job.
“If because of what I said, I am sacked, it will not bother me because I believe in Allah, that my time has elapsed that is why…”
“Baba is not a mad man like those calling for my sack. They have been sending it and spreading that if Baba sees this I will be sacked,” she stated at the time.
APC’s ‘Unstated’ Reasons
Alhassan has claimed that the APC didn’t give any reason for her disqualification but speaking on the party’s National Working Committee’s failure to clear Alhassan, National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole revealed;
“She had issues that have to do with party loyalty. Our constitution is clear and it dictates that to contest elections or even hold office in the APC, you must be loyal to the party in every material concern.
“From all she had said in the past and even her comments and general attitude during the screening, the NWC reviewed everything taken together and we arrived at the conclusion that she does not possess the level of loyalty the APC requires for her to contest elections on our platform.”
He said the minister was aware she was being denied from using the APC platform to contest the Taraba governorship election in 2019.
Meanwhile, now that Alhassan has resigned her position as Minister of Women Affairs and has also dumped the APC over the treatment meted out on her, what would be her next move?
Will she be pitching her tent with her political godfather, Atiku Abubakar as suggested in her comments? Questions only her can answer in the days ahead.