BY UWODE E. JOSEPHINE
Its astonishing to watch the distasteful utterances and irrational decisions taken by supposed lawmakers on core issues of national aggrandisement, all of which have played out to be symbol of national segregation along ethnic and regional planes.
The aftermath of the 2019 election has further deepened this ugly trend which has in turn unveiled the level of marginalisation meted on the South East region.
In the 21st century politics, one begins to wonder why a sensitive issue as the nomination of a senate president should be anchored on tribalism and regionalism which is an exhibition of lack of political civility and worsened by the the use of such prime appointments as a compensation package for votes gathered during the general election in favour of the ruling party (APC). This is an obvious case of political acrimony which is a killer approach to producing a formidable 9th senate, which ought to be rooted in issues of credibility to guarantee equity, justice and an egalitarian society.
The secession drive championed by Nnamdi kanu and the gigantic fan base he has garnered over time is a function of perceived marginalisation of the Igbo nation , as posited by the federal government over years, evident in their exclusion from top notch political appointments considered accountable for their disconnection from feeling developmental impact from the centre (Federal Government).
The South East having voted for the APC amidst all odd with a total vote of 403,968 which happens to be the greatest Mr president has achieved over the years of pursuit of his presidential ambition in the region, makes them deserving of political relevance.
Even if considered as inconsequential and not commensurate to the Northern vote, they are still people of equal stake with other political actors in the country irrespective of ethnic, regional or political affiliations as long as they remain entities of the the Federal Republic of Nigeria and not the imaginary Biafra state.
Allocating the position of the senate president to the South East requires no clamouring by moguls from the region such as Rochas Okorocha or any form of agitation before consideration should be given for their inclusion in decision making at the apex of administration. Contrary to this, portrays the call in this direction look like a political sacrilege to appoint an Igbo son as a senate president or Deputy, which is a sure display of intellectual dwarfism. The refusal to grant this request further presents the decision not to appoint them as a comeuppance for their perceived voter apathy displayed in the 2019 election.
The first backlash received at the infancy state of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration was the alleged lopsided appointments of his cabinet members, presenting him as a sectional leader as perceived by some political actors and followers. Issues of this kind if trivialised or less attended to seem to be a time bomb waiting to detonate if corrective measures are not put in place to foil such. The Boko Haram and militancy evils are more than enough saga as the nation can not entertain further havoc that can be born from such sense of economic and political deprivation of any region.
The drive for national cohesion can be made possible by prioritising competence and credibility as parameters for allocating key positions in governance and not the pay back strategy as contemplated in the discuss of who emerges the president of the 9th senate . Any attempt of denial of the south east to take this exotic position, epitomises the impression that the Igbo’s are considered political eunuch and outcast.
Governance should be an all encompassing venture, distant from political acrimony, religious and ethnic dichotomies. A deviation from this principle, depicts the tiers of government to have lost their sense of mission and purpose and a misplacement of priority.
The law making organ is the lifeblood of every nation and an error in the consideration of the fundamentals in appointing the drivers (the senate president and the speaker) will sure sniff the life out the nation’s political existence. A prevalence of the regular faulty selection process in the law making organ will cause a consistent reverberation of the nation’s biggest nightmare of adulterated policy formulation and implementation processes that has put issues of national aggrandisement on a reverse gear.
The input by the Igbos to the economic prosperity and success story of the nation through their enterprising nature, makes them deserving of respect and recognition in the Nigeria’s political scene and not to be treated as political midgets.
The ruling party APC shouldn’t be carried away by the thrills of the moment, as democracy is not just a game of number but strategy. In order for the party not to Shortlive its essence, the zoning of the position of the senate presidency or the speaker of the House of Representatives to the South East will serve as an instrument of getting the party strongly rooted in the South East region, in preparation for the 2023 general elections.
Its time to test the strength and next level of the nation’s democracy through appointments that reflect the ethic , regional, religious diversities that should stand as our strength rather than our weakness. This approach will help foster national unity and give every tribe or ethnic group a sense of belonging in their father land.
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