LATEST: Why I Lost Zamfara Guber Election To PDP – Matawalle
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The Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle, has claimed that he lost his re-election campaign in the March 18 polls because to his opposition to the federal government’s naira redesign strategy.
According to him, he had received news of preparations to deal with him and other Governors who filed a lawsuit against the Central Bank of Nigeria’s currency redesign policy (CBN).
The Governor revealed that soldiers who were deployed to the state three days before the election blocked All Progressives Congress (APC) supporters from voting.
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Matawalle claimed in an interview with DW Hausa on Wednesday that troops who arrived in the state in around 300 trucks blocked citizens from voting for him during the March 18 governorship election and beat up those who wanted to vote for the APC.
He said that if the military had been used to combat instability in the state, Zamfara would have been free of insurgents.
The Governor, however, noted that he is waiting for his party’s next course of action in response to the outcome of the governorship election.
“Going to court is for the party to decide not me. If the APC says it’s going to court, I cannot prevent the party because I’m under the party and any decision the party makes… I cannot stop it from taking any step it feels is right. We are waiting for the party to speak on what is the next thing to do,” Matawalle said.
“I told my people prior to the election not to take part in rigging the poll for me to win because I prefer the people of the state to vote for me to win without rigging.
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“During the election, the number of soldiers we saw in Zamfara was terrifying because we have never seen that number of soldiers in the state.
“The moment I saw them, I didn’t bother myself and I knew something was going on because I received confidential reports that there are some people who want to take revenge on me and some governors over some things they feel we didn’t do right.
“What they’ve been saying was when we filed a case at the court over the naira redesign policy, that I, [Abdullahi] Ganduje and [Nasir] el-Rufai will see the result of what we did.
“In truth, we have the challenge of insecurity in Zamfara which [we were] trying to get soldiers to be deployed but we couldn’t. But three days to the election, over 300 cars carrying soldiers came into Zamfara.
“If the troops had been sent when we were dealing with insecurity, by now, it would have been brought to an end in Zamfara.
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“No polling unit in Zamfara had less than 50 soldiers attached to it and the soldiers beat up and prevented people who intended to vote for the APC.
“All these things happened and we also have videos and when something happens and we call the soldiers, they don’t come. Therefore this was just something that was staged.”
The Governor added that it is not the first time he is losing an election and he would surely bounce back.
He said: “This is not my first time of losing in an election. I contested for senate in 2015 and lost. After losing, I contested again and won. I’m a politician, the struggle continues.”
Dauda Lawal of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was proclaimed the election winner, receiving 377,726 votes to defeat Matawalle, who received 311,976 votes.
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