ATABOR JULIUS LOKOJA.
Now that the political parties have concluded their primaries and standard bearers have been acknowledged by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, the battle has been shifted to the states.
In kogi state, there are three Senatorial Disticts and Seven Federal Constituencies.
In the East Senatorial District boast of nine State Constituencies , three federal and a Senatorial slot, the Central Senatorial District has five state Constituencies, three Federal , a Senatorial slot, while the West has Seven state Constituencies, three Federal and a Senatorial slot.
The Igala with highest population are dominant in the East, with the Central being inhabited mostly by the Ebira , while the Okuns Lokoja and Kotonkarfe dominates the Western District.
Kogi state, before the advent of the present administration, was largely a PDP state. Although, the lose of Governor Idris Wada of the PDP in 2015 to APC , has affected the cohesion, it is becoming glaring that the Party is set for the return to power, as the ruling APC in the state allegedly inflicted pains on the citizenry through orchestrated low performance.
The feedback from the people about the government in the re-election of 2019 was too hot to handle. In a desperation, the Government backed by Federal Might deployed obnoxious instruments of violence against the electorate, that has never been witnessed in the history of elections in the Country.
The people have kept their fingers in their mouths waiting for the opportunities to exhume their angst against the system that brought them misery and deprivation in the history of the state.,,
Two major parties, PDP and APC are dominant in the East and Central, while West have PDP, APC and ADC, with almost equal strength .
Although, some parties that merely exists in names have their candidate on the ballot.
Some political pundits, believed three factors will shape the outcome of the elections.
The factors includes but not limited to the emerging power pendulum between the PDP and APC at the centre; the antecedents of the candidates and the enormous financial outlay of the parties and her bearers , and the workability of the amended electoral Act.
In the Western District, Engineer Sunday Karimi of the APC will slug out with Hon. Tajudeen Yusuf , popularly known as Teejay of the PDP.
Hon. Tajudeen Yusuf, the incumbent House of representatives, representing, Kabba/ Bunu and Ijumu Federal constituency. Teejay, hails from Kabba , headquarters of the Constituency. He hold the record of being in the green Chamber for three consecutive terms. He is familiar with the dynamism of elections in that axis.
Teejay, a former student union leader in his university days. He has held on tenaciously to the electorate in Kabba, Ijumu and has deftly extended his grips to Lokoja and Kogi voters, even , when the two Local Government Areas were not part of his Constituency.
His constituency projects are commonplace, not only in his jurisdiction, but to almost all the seven LGAs of the senatorial District.
He will square up with his colleague, Barrister Shaba Ibrahim, of the PDP, who is firmly in charge of Lokoja and Kogi Fed constituency considered to be the swing area that will curry home victory for him.
His major challenge, would come from the Ijumu LGA, where Hon.Abiodun Faleke, who was the running mate of Late Prince Abubakar Audu in the ill fated 2015 Governorship election. He is of the APC and a strong ally of the presidential candidate, Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu. He command enormous financial resources and high rated influence on his people. He is likely to deploy these advantages for his party and her candidate.
Hon. Sunday Karimi of APC.
He was a two term member of the House of representatives on the platform of PDP. He defected to APC when , he was denied ticket to the senate by his former party. He is from Yagba Federal constituency, a zone , that has not produced Senator in the District, since the nascent democracy.
He is likely to get overwhelming votes from Yagba LGAs and with the combination of Faleke. He had not disappointed his people in terms of productive representation when he was in the green Chamber between 2003 and 2015. He has the incumbent Government behind him.
The present administration of APC has allegedly not been able to live to the expectations of the people. The last Senatorial election , the candidate of the APC, Senator Smart Adeyemi, won the votes from the Okun LGA , but lost in Lokoja and Kogi, before the result was arms twisted through legal verdict as the government had to mobilise coercive resources that later gave him the Victory , was a pointer that all is not well with the party in Lokoja, the state capital.
Yagba Federal House of Representatives.
The incumbent member of the House of representatives on the ticket of African Democratic Congress ADC. He is a philanthropist per excellent. He was denied ticket by the PDP in 2019 general elections. He brought hitherto obscure ADC and won overwhelmingly. He has been the husband of the widows, father of the orphans and the less privileged. His consistent payment of WAEC and NECO fees for final year students of public secondary schools across the the three LGAs: Yagba East, West and Mopa Amuro even before he ventured into politics was the magic wands for the victory.
Recently, he has extended the payment of Waec and Neco fees to students in private schools even to Kabba and Ijumu which are outside his constituency.
According to analysts on politics of the area, who summed up what will deny him the ticket is only death and destiny.
TJ Faniyi of the PDP.
A one time member of House of representatives and former commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs. His long absence from government may be his albatross.
Dr.Folorunsho Olafemi APC.
He is the son of former Speaker of kogi state House of Assembly. He lives abroad in the United Kingdom. He is well educated. His strength is largely anchored on the political structure of his father.
Kabba / Ijumu fed. Constituency.
Barrister Matthew Olobatoke. He seemed to be a grassroot politician, from Kabba LGA. He is believed to have the support of his people. His snag, is predicated on the Ijumu not having her own on PDP and APC.tickets. The Ijumus are likely to jettison their parties and vote for their son in other party.
Matthew kolawole APC not decided.
He is the current speaker of the state Assembly. He is a grassroots politician. He has hold on Bunu side of the Local Government Area. He has an axe to grind with members of other clans. The recent omision of his name in INEC register , if not promptly rectified would lay his ambition to rest.
Architect Salman Idris. ADC.
He was of the PDP. He hail from Ijumu. He has comfortable resources. He was a known face in previous elections. He may use the goodwill of Leke Abejjde for his advantage. His kit and kins would work for him, since, they have lost out both in PDP and APC.
Lokoja / Kogi
Barrister Shaba Ibrahim PDP.
Former House of Assembly member, and currently a member of the House of representatives. He hails from Kogi Kotonkarfe. He is unarguably the leader of the people in Kogi Kotonkarfe, his homestead. He lives in Lokoja. His foray in the green chamber, according to his followers has been a blessing to the Communities. He has the support of electorate in Kogi and Lokoja ward A. He is also not a minor in Lokoja 11. His constituency projects across the nooks and crannies in the two local government areas have endeared him to both the elites and the common man and woman.
Lokoja,and her inhabitants have continually detested the lackluster governance of the present administration. They have willy nilly rejected the APC in previous elections This was demonstrated in the last election in which , helicopters and weapon of mass destruction were allegedly unleashed on the voters, for daring to pass votes of no confidence on them at the poll.
His opponent, Suleiman Aguye of the APC , aside the dynamics of election, before noon , the election would have been over.
Central Senatorial District.
Barrister Natasha Akpoti. PDP.
She hails from Okehi LGA. She is unarguably the queen of women political emancipation. She was a thorn and thistle on Governor Yahaya Bello and his administration. She contested on the SDP Against Gov. Bello in the last governorship election. She command cult like followership across the Zone. She is married to multi billionaire business man Uduaghan. Aside her popularity, her husband has extensive network of friends across the country, which he can easily deploy to garner support for her.
Engineer Abubakar Sadiq Ohere APC.
He is from Okene LGA with Gov. Yahaya Bello, and he is the present commissioner for works. He is regarded as a placehold for Gov. Yahaya Bello.
Ajaokuta Federal Constituency.
Sani Egidi Abdulraheem APC.
He is a technocrat.He has just retired from the state employment as a permanent secretary. He is also a businessman, with vast interest in hospitality business. He is a grassroot politician. He has used his position in Government to attract development to his people.
He has reconstructed the dreaded Ganaja Primary School road which has been a source of worries to the people of the area. He is a philanthropist per excellence. He has supplied transformers to some Communities in the District. He has been source of hopes to the widows, orphans and the vulnerable . His Sea Care Foundation has been uplifting education in the state.
Raimi as he is fondly called by his admirers has the support of the ruling APC.
His recent political inroad into the most populous ward– Geregu has created nightmares for his opponents.
Aloysius Okino PDP.
He is not new to the turf. A former chairman of Ajaokuta Local Government Council and chairman of ALGON , lost narrowly to Lawal Idris of the then APC to the bandwagon effect. He is the son of the PDP stalwart in the District. He need to have serious presence in Geregu ward if he should win.
Lawal Idris NNPP
He is the current member of the House of representatives. He is an industrialists, with vast interest in building industry. He is from Geregu. He failed the APC primary. He is now running on New NIgerian Peoples Party , a very relatively new party in the state. He has a lot of work in selling the party to the electorate.
Dr. Victor Adoji. PDP.
He hails from Okula-Lafia in Ofu LGA of the state. He spent most of his growing up at Anyigba , Dekina LGA , the most politically volatile area in the District. He commands the youth followership. A banker per excellence. Although, the final result in the last Senatorial election, which he contested on the platform of SDP , after PDP denied him of the ticket, analysts believed that, he lost to shenanigans perpetuated by the powers that be.
They averred that, given the provisions in the electoral Act as amended, the zone which is traditionally an PDP, he may not be too far from winning.
Alhaji Isah Echocho Jibrin.APC.
He is the current Senator from the zone .He hails from Ajiolo in Dekina LGA. He was a banker of note. He narrowrily missed being the governor in 2011 on the ticket of PDP. He had used his vantage position to employ sizeable numbers of youths in his bank.
His defence and tacit support on the floor of the hallowed senate chamber for the post election brutal murder of a PDP woman leader in Ochadamu, Mrs Salome Anegwu Adah has become a log hung on his neck. His defence drew and continue to draw condemnation from all the men and women of good conscience of the zone and beyond. He has not been able to leave above board in the delivery of the dividends of Democracy to the people. His ability to wriggle himself out of the self inflicted controversy will determine his political future.
Dekina / Bassa Federal constituency
Amb. Austin Okai PDP.
He is a blogger. Reputed to be the main voice of PDP and the Igalas.
He used his blog to tackle the maladministration of this Government, which , endeared him to the people of Eastern Zone.
He is very popular among the youths,and the elites, no wonder, that many persons did not reckon with him in the primaries, but came out victorious. All things being equal, he is as good as being elected.
Gowon Idris Haruna. APC.
A former House of Assembly member on the platform of PDP. He control a thick pulse. He is not new to the turf, but each time he tries, he fails. Maybe, this could be his time. He is suspiciously laden with image problem among his people. Most of his businesses domiciled in the zone were believed to be deserted by customers.
Ankpa Olamaboro Omala federal Constituency.
Hon. Abdullahi Ibrahim Alih( Halims.)
He is from Angwa Ogebe in Ankpa main town in Ankpa Local Government Area, with high voting strength above Olamaboro and Omala LGAs. He was a one time Member of House of Assembly on the platform of PDP . He is believed to have been constantly oiling his structures in the party across board. He has enormous money. He is said to have the state machineries on his side. His stay in the green chamber is not a fluke. He cleverly uses his position to attract employment for constituents.
Hon. Joshua Adejoh PDP.
He hails from Olamaboro LGA. He lived most part of his growing up in Omala LGA.
He is young, very successful in business.
Although,he has not been a candidate in organised elections, he became the Second runner up in the 2019 PDP primary election for Ankpa Olamaboro Omala Federal Constituency.
He has a solid youth based followership which accounted for his winning the primary defeating the political juggernauts.
His strength lies in Omala and Olamaboro who are staunch supporters of PDP.
His ability to placate the aggrieved from the primaries , work in synergy with the PDP in Ankpa, and Hon.Habibat Deen , then , the die will cast.