June 6, 2023

10th NASS: We may not support APC in 2027 if… — North Central group 

Tinubu's ministerial nominees

By Henry Umoru, ABUJA

AHEAD of the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly on 13th June, a group under the aegis of the Concerned North Central All Progressives Congress (APC) Stakeholders Forum has sent a message to Senator Abdullahi Adamu led National Working Committee, NWC that if it fails to review the zoning template for the Presiding offices for both the Senate and the House of Representatives, the zone may not support the party in 2027.

Addressing Journalists yesterday in Abuja, the National Coordinator of the group, Dominic Alancha who gave the tall warning, however, stressed that the positions of Deputy Senate President and Speaker cannot be zoned to the North-west when the North Central has not been given anything presiding office in the yet to be inaugurated 10th National Assembly.

According to the group, for equity, fairness and justice,  the North Central zone cannot be totally excluded from the zoning arrangement.

Recall that the All Progressives Congress, APC had announced the endorsement of Senator Godswill Akpabio and three others for the topmost positions in the National Assembly. Senator Akpabio from South-South was endorsed for Senate President, Senator Jubrin Barau from the North-west for Deputy Senate President, Honourable Tajudeen Abass, North-west for Speaker, House of Representatives and  Hon. Kanu, South-East for Deputy Speaker.

This has not gone down well with some members of the party and especially those aspiring for the position of Presiding offices in both the Senate and the House of Representatives as have been protests, condemnations and strong criticisms across the country.

The APC’s zoning was highly criticized as to why a  party would allow two of the six presiding offices in the National Assembly to a zone and leave the North Central without any position, even as many others criticized the zoning of Deputy Speaker to the South-East instead of Presidency of the Senate generally believed to be due to the zone.

Speaking further, Alancha therefore, demanded that the four principal positions in the National Assembly should be shared among the zones other than the zones the President and Vice President hail from.

Alancha said: “The agitation today was because of the total exclusion of North Central. It is an aberration and unacceptable.

“If our people feel shortchanged, do you think our people will support the party in 2027? It is unfortunate that our governors are nowhere to speak, the region is looking up to them. We are telling them the feelings of our people.”

The group described it as an inexplicable and biased decision of the APC to introduce strange and obtuse arrangements where a whole geopolitical zone was sidelined while another was given two key positions in the National Assembly hierarchy.

According to the group,  it cannot fold its arms and do nothing when a situation that could lead to a social cataclysm was being introduced.

It commended the cooperation and unity of the six aspirants who have come together under one umbrella to resist the attempt at the imposition of an unpopular candidate as the next Speaker of the House of Representatives.

It also urged Senator Sani Musa, APC, Niger East to remain strong in the race to defend the interest of the North Central Region.

Alancha added: “We note the observation that the national chairman of our great party is from the North Central zone and with the appointment of Senator George Akume as the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, that the North Central has been compensated.

“But we say no to these assertions as they do not respect the principle of separation of power in a democracy.”

The group added that while the executive arm could decide what was best suited for it in allocating offices within it, the parliament operates on a principle that complements the two topmost positions in the executive arm.

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