Recently, the Chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Mr. John Oyegun, was quoted as saying that he was “sad” that his party could not produce a lawmaker from the South East to be elected as senate president or speaker of the House of Representatives when the new national assembly would be inaugurated in June. This was because during the last elections, the APC performed so poorly in the South East that it was unable to win a single seat in the two houses of the national assembly in the region.
Ordinarily, this should have been an exclusive problem of the APC, but given the way Mr. Oyegun spoke, someone might be deluded into thinking that some really monumental tragedy had hit the South East – for which the people of the area should be in deep mourning by now.
Since the presidential election which the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Attahiru Jega, told us was won by the APC’s General Muhammadu Buhari, one has lost count of articles ecstatically celebrating how the “wrong voting” of majority of South Easterners has now put the zone to a “great disadvantage.”
Some solutions have also been “kindly” proffered by quite a number of people to “help” the South East out of its predicament, like the very absurd suggestion that a senator-elect from Enugu State should decamp to the APC so he could become the senate president; or even the much more off-putting call on a female Senator-elect from Anambra State to step down for the APC candidate she defeated, since the man is a “very good material” for the senate presidency. One could go on and on, but what is of concern here is that Mr. Oyegun’s assertion would seem to have somewhat elevated these clearly pedestrian views and clothed them with the false robe of serious discourse.
Now, apart from providing another juicy job for another member of the largely parasitic and incompetent political class, what exactly will the South East gain if somebody from the zone becomes the senate president? Or, put another way, the zone has produced senate presidents before now, and apart from the delusive emotional satiation some fellows from their villages might have felt when they heard that their “brother” had “crossed over” to join other fat cats as a distinguished member of Nigeria’s Eating Class, what exactly (in practical terms) did their communities or even states gain from their occupation of that position? I sincerely wish to know how a South Easterner becoming the senate president would affect the price of fish at Afor Umuaka or Eke-Ututu market, even in this era of “change.”
Okay, after the 2011 elections, the position of the speaker of the House of Representatives was zoned by the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the South West. But the lawmakers from the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) – the dominant party in the same South West at that time, led by Bola Tinubu, reportedly, conspired with som