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Nine candidates step down for Shettima in Borno
By Musdapha Ilo, Maiduguri
Governor Kashim Shettima’s chances in Saturday’s gubernatorial elections brightened on Thursday as candidates from nine other political parties withdrew from the race in support of his re-election bid.
The nine other contenders in the race announced their decision on Thursday morning shorting after a meeting with Shettima at the Government House, Maiduguri.
The nine governorship candidates who stepped down for the governor are Abba Modu (SDP), Abu Sakwa (CPP), Rufai Monguno (ACN), Ahmed Bulama (ACPN), and Ahmed Galtima (NCPN). Others are Babagana Bakomi (Labour Party), Ajiya Auno (APGA), Babagana Musa (CPA), and Joel Joseph, deputy governorship candidate of Accord Party.
The candidates said that they decided to withdraw from the race and support Shettima because of the realisation that he had performed well in running the affairs of the state in the last four years.
The ACN candidate, Rufai Monguno, who spoke for others said that there was no point “changing a winning horse”
“When we stepped up to answer the call of our teeming supporters to contest the governorship of our dear state, we had the welfare of our people and development of Borno state at heart. But we later realized that there is no use fighting over the seat when the incumbent governor, Kashim Shettima, has achieved all that we desired for Borno state,” he said.
Continuing, Monguno said that they believed that the governor had a better plan for the people of the state and that the nine candidates had come to the Government House to pledge their support for him.
They also pledged to mobilize their supporters to vote for the APC candidate, adding that they would formally write a letter to the Borno State office of the Independent National Electoral Commission, intimating it of their withdrawal from the race.
An elated Shettima expressed happiness at the support from the other candidates, describing the move as “an act of statesmanship worthy of commendation.”
He assured them and the people of the state that his government would continue to do its best for the people of Borno state.