The Kano State Government said yesterday that former vice president and presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, is free to use the Sani Abacha Stadium for his presidential campaign in the state.
The PDP presidential candidate is scheduled to be in Kano on Feb. 10 for his political rally, but the state government ordered the closure of the venue of the rally, saying the facility would be renovated.
The development had generated criticism in many quarters, with some PDP sympathizers saying the whole idea was to deny the PDP presidential candidate access to the facility.
However, the Commissioner of Information, Malam Mu-hammad Garba said yesterday that Gov. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje had ordered the contractor handling the renovation works at the stadium to immediately demobilize to pave way for Atiku’s campaign to hold.
Garba, however, indicated that the directive does not affect ongoing overhaul of the indoor sports complex.
“The contractor has been directed to remove all machineries from the precinct of the stadium till after the campaign rally, while the state darling team, Kano Pillars has been directed to use the Pillars Stadium, Sabon Gari for its training sessions,” he said.
Garba said prior to the closure of the stadium, the PDP had slated February 2 for the rally, which informed government decision to mobilize the contractor only for the party to fix another date when the contractor had already moved to site.
“As a democrat who believes in freedom of association, the governor did not ordered the closure of the stadium to frustrate the campaign rally of the PDP. The stadium only closed for the intended renovation works,’’ he said.