Igbo‘ll have Reason to Reject APC If Denied Senate President – Ekechi
Former Commissioner for Information and Strategy in Imo State, Dr. Theodore Ekechi, has said the people of South-East would have reason for rejecting the All Progressives Congress (APC) if the party denies the zone the position of the President of the Senate.
Senator Uwajumogu’s election was interrupted and declared inconclusive, what would you say led to that? >>> He is one of the testimonies of the coalition group in Imo State that fought Okorocha and stopped him from making his son in-law, Uche Nwosu his successor. Ben is one person Okorocha never wanted to be in the 9th Senate. In fact, Rochas Okorocha swore with his blood that Uwajumogu would never be re-elected. And Okorocha marched his words with action by deploying materials, logistics and resources to ensure that Uwajumogu did not return to the Senate. That was why Uwajumogu’s election was stalled because of the influence of Okorocha, but as God would have it the governorship election overwhelmed Okorocha and so he did not wade much influence during the second election as he did during the first in Imo North Senatorial election. So, God was and still on the side of Sen. Uwajumogu and he will make it in the end.
But the argument was that Uwajumogu was not popular? >>> That has nothing to do with popularity because Uwajumogu is a popular Senator from Okigwe zone.
What is your expectation of the 9th Senate? >>> If we must be modest to ourselves, the 8th Assembly is made up of strange bed fellows. Unlike before, APC will enjoy a greater majority in the 9th Assembly and it has become clearer now that most people won because they rode on the back of President Muhammadu Buhari. Their inability to return to the National Assembly is a demonstration that the president influenced their election in 2015. So, the Senators-elect will learn not to join the opposition to frustrate the efforts of President Buhari by refusing to pass into law bills that would better the lives of Nigerians.
You said President Buhari influenced the victory of some lawmakers in 2015, but that because they worked against the interest of the president, they were not re-elected, is the President of Senate, Bukola Saraki one them, if so what lesson should we learn from that? >>> The lesson to learn is that power comes from the people and anybody the people love and elect as their leader if you work against the person’s interest, it means you are working against the people. Those who got power on the platter should not be power drunk like Governor Okorocha has done. You can equally say like Saraki, like Rochas, people who got power and suddenly see it as their birthright or tradition for them to always have power. So, the people are beginning to speak. It is because of the level playing ground that President Buhari has introduced into Nigeria politics that ensured the will of the people prevailed. If it were to be those days when the president influenced members of the Senate to impeach Senate President at all cost because he did not do his bidding, there won’t be free and fair election. Before now, other presidents always struck a deal with Senate presidents that they should support them to be re-elected and they would come back as President of the Senate, but Buhari was willing to lose election for the proper thing to be done. Buhari did not allow any candidate to enjoy undue advantage over the other candidates not even APC candidates not even Governor Rochas Okorocha with all the money he has, he could not influence the president to help him make his son in-law governor. It is a lesson for all politicians that there will be a day that the people will rise up against them.
What happen if APC fails to zone the senate presidency to the South-East? >>> I doubt if President Buhari will allow that to happen having been criticised by people of South-East of marginalisation them in federal appointments and his failure to balance political positions. Therefore, there is need to return to the tripod upon which Nigeria political structure stood until the emergence of APC. I agree with the view that zoning is usually done before going into the contest and for the sake of equity, since the North has the presidency and the South West has produced the vice president, it is expected that South East will occupy the position of President of the Senate. Igbo could not occupy the position in the 8th Senate because there was no ranking Senator of APC from the zone, but now they have, therefore a senator-elect from the South-East should be allowed to take the Igbo share. Anything short of this will backfire and APC will lose credibility in the entire South-East.
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