Some aggrieved aspirants in the race for the Senate President position in the 10th National Assembly in Nigeria have threatened to disobey the micro-zoning arrangement adopted by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
Photo: Senator Orji Uzor Kalu
The senators, who registered their grievances at a meeting with the party leadership and members of the National Working Committee, argued that no aspirant was consulted before the official decision was taken. They warned that if the APC fails to restrict the zoning arrangement to geopolitical regions, it could lead to open rebellion because the aggrieved aspirants will brazenly disobey the party. The lawmakers in attendance were former Zamfara Governor, Abdulaziz Yari; the senator-elect representing Imo West, Osita Izunaso; Sani Musa (Niger East), Umar Sadiq (Kwara North) and Senate Chief Whip, Orji Uzor Kalu.
Photo: Senator Abdulaziz Yari
The development comes three days after the ruling party had micro-zoned the Senate President position to immediate past Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godwin Akpabio, while Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Jibrin Barau, was named as his would-be Deputy Senate President in the 10th Assembly. In the House of Representatives, the seat of Speaker was zoned to popular Kaduna lawmaker, Tajudeen Abass, while the rep-elect from the South East clinched the Deputy Speaker slot.
Senator Musa argued that when it comes to rewarding regions for votes and electoral victory, the North cannot be overlooked because of its massive contributions. He told the leadership of the party not to push its luck further, saying an internal democracy would have produced the needed consensus candidates it seeks.
Senator Yari also argued that a level playing field should be given to everybody, including northern senators, to determine their fate. He warned that anything to the contrary would lead to northern Nigeria taking another decision.
Senator Kalu made a case for the South East region, saying that penciling down names of favored aspirants was undemocratic. He argued that federal character and not votes should be a major consideration when sharing political and legislative offices in the country. According to him, if the current micro-zoning arrangement is not reviewed, they would be forced to disobey the ruling party position ahead of the inauguration.
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