Most residents of Kano woke up to the news that the Presidential election billed to hold today had been postponed till next Saturday, February 23. Like other parts of the country, the city had literally close for the election. Most residents must have been asleep around 2am, when Mahmud Yakubu, Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission,INEC, announced the postponement of the election.
Residents woke up to the news of the postponement. Friends, neighbours called one another for confirmation of the news. As at 9 am when TELL went around the city, residents were seen in groups along the streets talking about the postponement and the likely implications, with many expressing their disappointment and anger.
At a designated polling centre close to the residence of the late Aminu Kano, a group of youths were engaged in argument on whether the postponement was instigated by the ruling party for fear of losing the election or due to logistics challenges as stated by the Independent Electoral Commission, INEC.
The argument went down to the two leading presidential candidates. One of them said INEC had four years to prepare for the election, and it wouldn’t have postponed
The situation was similar in most parts of the city as residents share the news of the postponement. But most people expressed deep disappointment at the development and asked why INEC had to postpone the election at the last hour.
Barde Inuwa, a resident who spoke with the magazine, said he woke up by 5am when he received a call from a friend asking him whether he had heard the news.
“Honestly, I’m disappointed. I just want us to get pass,this election so that we can face our lives. What is important for me is my survival, that’s what’s on my mind,” he said.
Yahya Kibia, a civil servant, also expressed disappointment at INEC, which waited till few hours to election before postponing it. “Why didn’t they do the postponement earlier? Now the opposition will say they want to rig the election, and nobody will blame them.”
His neighbor, a commercial motorcyclist, said he was angry because INEC had postponed the victory of his presidential candidate. “By now, the whole ballot boxes would have been filled with votes for Atiku. We’re tired of Baba Buhari, we’re tired of suffering. When the PDP was there, they said they were stealing money, but we the masses were helping ourselves and things were not as tough for us as now,” he said.
Some residents around the Murtala Muhammed Specialist Hospital who also spoke with the magazine expressed divergent views. Some said it was unfortunate and lamented the time and resources wasted.
A sugar dealer at the popular Singer Market, Musa Bello, said the postponement is a huge loss to businesses in the city. “My daily turn-over is about five million naira, and on a Saturday which is a busy day for the market, my turn-over can be up to ten million naira. Now, even if I go to the market now, there is no way I will get two million naira. So it’s a loss of about 80 percent. And it is the same with other dealers and traders in different markets in the city, “he said.