I don’t want to be a godfather, says El-Rufai

Usman Abdullah
Usman Abdullah
Nasir El-Rufai

The immediate past governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, has said he does not want to be seen as a godfather in Kaduna.

Speaking at a Capacity-Enhancement Workshop for Senior Government Officials in Borno State, on Monday. El-Rufai, said he has only visited Kaduna five times since he left office almost a year ago.

“I don’t want to be a godfather and that’s why I don’t interfere in what is happening in Kaduna, I want him (the governor) to learn and get the job by himself.”

“The leader should get good people to get the job done. Only God can do everything by himself, no matter how good you are as a leader, you can be as effective as the people around you, and that’s why the saying goes, No country gets better than the quality of its civil service.”

This is the first time El-Rufai has spoken publicly since two weeks ago when the seeming rift between him and his successor, Senator Uba Sani, started.

At a town hall meeting in Kaduna on March 30, 2024, Sani said his administration inherited a huge debt burden of $587 million, N85 billion, and 115 contractual liabilities from the administration of El-Rufai.

Governor Sani lamented that, due to the rise in the exchange rate, the state is now paying back almost triple of what was borrowed by the previous administration.

Explaining that the huge debt burden was eating deep into the state’s federal allocation, he said N7bn out of the N10bn federal allocation for the state in March was deducted to service the state’s debt.

The governor further lamented that the state was left with N3bn, an amount he said was not enough to pay salaries, as the state’s monthly salary bill stood at N5.2 billion.

Although one of El-Rufai’s sons went after the governor, whom he accused of incompetence, the former governor refrained from making public comments.

Meanwhile, the cold war between El-Rufai and his successor, has created a gap in the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kaduna as stakeholders and party supporters are torn between the two camps.

Aisha Galadima, a female politician and APC member who recently posted a negative social media comment about the governor, apparently to show loyalty to El-Rufai, was picked up by security agents believed to be operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS), on Sunday.

According to sources, Galadima criticised Sani’s last comment against the former governor of the state, Nasir El-Rufai in a post on her Facebook page.

A neighbour said she was arrested in her community in the Tudun Wada area of Kaduna on Sunday afternoon, and another friend stated that Galadima’s phone was switched off after the arrest.

However, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Muhammad Lawal Shehu, said he was not aware of the arrest and directed inquiries about the matter to the DSS for further clarification.

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