By Bilyat Haruna
I followed keenly Senator Danjuma Goje’s most thriving political antecedent and monumental successes right from when he was appointed as the minister of state for power and steel by President Olusegun Obasanjo up to the period of his two-term tenure as the governor of Gombe state and, presently, his third outing as the senator, representing Gombe Central Senatorial District in the red chamber of the National Assembly.
His sterling and amazing feats as a minister of the federal republic had endeared him more to the entire people of Gombe state, who, in return, beckoned on him to contest the exalted seat of the governor of the state under the podium of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
In spite of its seeming impossibility and outward tediousness to muscle power from an incumbent government, In 2003, Goje was able to galvanise forces and wrestled the political supremacy of Gombe state from the late Abubakar Habu Hashidu All Nigerian Peoples Party, ANPP, led administration in the state.
Proudly, under his watch, Goje successfully transformed Gombe state from what hitherto looked like a glorified local government area, still bonded under the state-run of Bauchi, to the shining face of a sovereign state with state-of-the-art infrastructural facilities that cut across all sectors of the economy – education, health, agriculture, security, housing, human capital development, and lots more.
Still, loved by his people and everyone who might have been lucky meeting him, after the extermination of his second term as the Governor in 2011, some elders of the state benevolently bought him a form to contest the Gombe Central Senatorial seat to enable him continue to serve his people, Gombe state and Nigeria as a whole.
To say Goje is an administrative and political go-getter is an irony. He is a reservoir of politics, administrative shrewdness, and prime mover of human capital development when and wherever he sits on the position of leadership. In fact, his astonishing legacies and political triumphs speak volume for him beyond an ordinary human verdict.
For those who are still in doubt or don’t have the inkling about him, Goje’s credential are truly intimidating and his successes in life have justified the fact that his abilities surpass any human imagination; this is someone who rose from being a member of the Gombe State House of Assembly to becoming a senate which was later transmuted to being a minister, an eight-year governor and then to a third time senator.
Today, in Gombe state, virtually all the key infrastructure and other significant projects that uplifted the state to its existing prestige of a desirable and enviable city were installed by Senator Goje – the state-of-the-art Gombe State University, Institute of Transport Technology Kumo, Gombe International Hotel, Gombe Jewel Hotel Abuja, Gombe International Airport, Gombe Township Stadium, Dadin Kowa Water Project, Gombe Central Mosque, Gombe CAN Centre, transformation and upgrading of traditional institutions and lots more. It’s not easy to capture Goje’s achievements in just a one-off article like this.
Goje also influenced and facilitated the establishment of the Federal University Kashere and College of Horticulture Dadin Kowa. These tertiary institutions masterminded by him are not only a boost to the state’s knowledge base, but have also become sources of employment to many of Gombe state’s sons and daughters. Obviously, these are some of his numerous projects without which Gombe state will be relegated from her present glowing and fulsome status to the lower rank of a back-water state.
In the late 2019, Goje magnanimously declared his decision to quit elective politics, basically to pave the way for others to give a shot in representing the good people of Akko and Yamaltu Deba local government areas which form the Gombe Central Senatorial District.
Though, many people observers and pundits have graciously welcomed the development but the people of Goje’s constituency and many others who have in one way or the other enjoyed the senator’s kind gestures and have been touched by his matchless projects, are demoralised by the shocking pronouncement – the message was visibly seen on their disappointed faces. The truth is that, they don’t want Goje out of the system in the best interest and overall good of Gombe state and the nation as a whole.
Consequently, prominent politicians not only from the two local government areas Goje is representing, but also from all the nooks and crannies of Gombe state recently converged on Kumo Stadium where they unanimously called on Senator Goje to rescind his decision and contest in the 2023 election – some have pledged to buy his nomination and expression of interest forms while others have threatened to take a legal action in case Goje rejects their plea.
In spite of the fact that Goje will one day allow space for someone to represent his people, but for the growth and political stabilization of the polity, 2023 is not the right time for him to quit; we do hope he will heed the voice of the majority to re-contest. We have seen in many instances where some politicians he groomed have behaved poorly when they are given positions of leadership.
So, the only choice for Senator Goje is to heed the calls and yearnings of not only his constituents but also the entire people of Gombe state to contest in the 2023 elections.
Haruna writes from Gombe, Gombe state.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Sky Daily