By Henry Umoru
BARELY 24 hours after the leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, joined the President-elect, President Goodluck Jonathan, at the Pristine Obudu Mountain Ranch Resort to confer with him, Senate President David Mark also joined them yesterday as part the intense lobby for political positions.
Mark who won the Benue South senatorial election for a record fourth term is in the race to retain his position as Senate President in the 7th Senate, even as the position has become very contentious between the North Central and North East geo-political zones of the country .
In the fight for the position of Senate President, besides Mark from the North Central Zone, Governor Danjuma Goje of Gombe State (North East), his Kwara State counterpart, Bukola Saraki and Senator-elect for Taraba North, Aisha Jummai Alhassan are all said to be vying for the Senate President’s seat.
The two governors who will be completing their two terms won election into the upper legislative chamber on April 9 and are coming as new entrants, just as Mrs Alhassan.
In the last 24 hours, the President, the PDP Acting National Chairman, Dr. Bello Haliru Mohammed and the National Secretary, Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje have been holding high level talks at the resort on who gets what in the yet-to-be constituted Federal Executive Council, board of parastatals and other leadership positions especially the Senate and the House of Representatives.
Mark’s proactive visit to President Jonathan and PDP leaders may not be unconnected with the fact that once the ruling party decides on what zone should get what position, it may be almost impossible for him to contest for the presidency of the Senate if it goes outside the North Central zone.
Though Mark is seen as the man to beat for the job because of his matured leadership of the Senate in the past four years, Governor Goje is contending that the seat should go to the North East since the North Central has held the position for four years.
Apart from Senator Mark, the Minister of the Niger Delta, Godsday Orubebe and his Justice Ministry counterpart were also said to have relocated to Obudu Cattle Ranch to stay close to Mr. President and PDP leaders. The possible list of in_coming ministers is said to be on the discussion table at the Ranch.