The name Isa Yuguda first came to public attention during the Obasanjo administration when Yuguda was made the Minister of Aviation. We eventually came to understand that Isa Yuguda comes from Bauchi State and is a member of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
Isa Yuguda is a man or was a man with a mammoth popularity in Bauchi State. Those who never knew how popular the man was learnt it when he expressed his intention to become the successor of Adamu Muazu as Governor of Bauchi State. He was quickly accepted by the people of Bauchi State.
In contemporary times it is difficult to tell a Nigerian political story without touching the area of reckless financial dealings by serving politicians. The ordinary man in Bauchi however, saw Yuguda as a rare politician that comes from a wealthy background, so wealthy that he will not be interested in the public resources. All that mattered to him was the well being of every day people in the state.
As 2007, the year of election approached however, it became obvious that Governor Mu’azu had another candidate beside Isa Yuguda. Mallam Isa Yuguda failed to secure the endorsement of Mu’azu under the PDP. It was then the popularity of Isa Yuguda was demonstrated. The people advised him to decamp from the PDP and contest on the podium of the All Nigeria’s People Party, ANPP. So it was.
In the state of Kano four years earlier, a new voter strategy was successfully put to test. The Hausas describe it as a kasa, a tsare, a raka, meaning ‘cast, protect and follow up.’ It was used when the Kano people decided they were fed up with the administration of Mallam Rabiu Kwankwaso. One of his commissioners, Ibrahim Shekarau, was advised to decamp to the ANPP to contest against his boss in the next election. It worked and Shekarau is now enjoying the second tenure as Governor of Kano State. A kasa, a tsare, a raka, was put to test in Bauchi state in 2007 and was successful as Isa Yuguda became the fourth democratically elected Governor of Bauchi State. The popularity of Isa Yuguda was further demonstrated when the people decided to punish Mu’azu for daring to deny them their wish by ensuring that the Muazu lost his contest for the Senate. It was described as a major upset. This is despite the fact that Mu’azu was one of the best Governors within the period 1999 to 2007.
Two years after Isa Yuguda became the Governor of Bauchi State; his popularity seems to be on the fall. It started when Isa Yuguda decided to stab the ANPP on the back by decamping back to the PDP. Prior to decamping to the PDP was his wedding to a daughter of President Umaru Yar’adua. A lot of people see adding of an additional wife as a frivolous issue for a Governor that already has a wife even when his religion allows him freedom to have more than one. The fundamental reason for grudges among the citizens of Bauchi State centers around the delivery of the administration in its two years. The people are now beginning to see the worth of Mu azu.
When people begin to lose faith in an administration, the atmosphere also becomes rife for wild rumours. One of the rumours linked to Isa Yuguda now, has to do with the presidency. It goes that there is a good chance that Yar’adua may not go for a second tenure, except there is an assurance that he has fully overcome his health problem. Should that happen, the President would be adequately compensated with his daughter as the First Lady of the Federation. In other words, Isa Yuguda wishes to become the next President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The second rumour is in connection with the shortcomings of the administration of Isa Yuguda in Bauchi State. It goes that Yuguda believes that Muazu, during his time, saturated Bauchi State with developments such that there is nothing left to develop. Thus Yuguda has decided to use the opportunity to enrich his friends.
Mu’azu is now emerging as the real hero of Bauchi State.