The Kaduna State Government paid some Islamic clerics about N27 million to campaign in mosques for the re-election of Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai in 2019, a document seen by SaharaReporters has shown.
The document, a letter dated March 4, 2019, written by the Director-General, Interfaith, Engineer Muhammadu to the Secretary to the State Government, said the fund was to provide “logistics support to Imams of Jummat Mosques towards a favorable Friday sermon.”
The letter read, “The SSG may wish to note that in line with the agreed plan of providing logistics support to Imams of Jummat Mosques towards a favorable Friday sermon the Friday preceding the date of the Gubernatorial election, the 1st batch of the 50% disbursement was released as follows.
“Sheik Tukur Adam (N500,000), Sheik Murtala Shanono (N500,000), Sheik Aminu Kuwait (N250,000), Saidu Abubakr (N250,000), Khamis Almiziri (N250,000), Sheik Albani Samaru (N250,000), Sheik Bala Lau (N2,500,000), Sheik Kabiru Gombe (N2,500,000).
“The sum of N20,000,000 was also disbursed to the above Imams to share among other Islamic scholars that can preach towards our cause of retaining the seat of power in Kaduna State. The 2nd phase of 50% balance disbursement is expected to be ready by Thursday 7th March 2019 to enable us fulfill the agreement reached in our last meeting.”
However, it is not clear if or when the disbursement of the remaining 50 percent (N7 million) promised to the clerics was released.
The 2019 Kaduna State governorship election was held on March 9, 2019.
El-Rufai, the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and incumbent governor won re-election for a second term, beating the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Isah Ashiru.
He had 1,045,427 valid ballot votes or 55.32% of total votes, while Ashiru had 814,168 valid ballot votes or 43.08% of total votes.