Dear Senators-Elect,

SENATE PRESIDENCY

Congratulations on your elections into the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria at this auspicious time that Nigerians have clearly spoken with their votes on the direction they want the country to advance. At no other time have Nigerians expressed their desires with such clarity, this is apparently a prelude to the increased participation and engagement that citizens will have with their elected representatives and their lawmakers under the incoming administration.

Come June, you will be sworn into the eighth senate after which you will in turn elect your first among equals, the President of the Senate of Federal Republic of Nigeria. It is common knowledge that the majority party in the incoming senate has its zoning arrangement for principal offices. It is also a giving that the Senate has its standing rules. However, we appeal that our incoming distinguished members should consider equity and fair play in addition to these factors.

In terms of zoning, we support the decision to zone the position of Senate President to the north central geopolitical zone, as it is our belief that this will promote unity and sense of belonging, not just among the people of this zone but the entire country at large.

We acknowledge that the Senate Rule automatically restricts eligibility to ranking senators, which further narrows the field of eligibility to ranking senators from the designated geopolitical zone.

It is on this note that we appeal to senators-elect that other factors like religious affiliations and ethnic configuration be given strong consideration in arriving at who becomes the Senate President. The nation’s number one job, the position of the President has already been clinched by the North West geopolitical zone just as the South West has the number two slot of Vice President by virtue of the outcome of the election.

The North Central is thus in line for the number three slot of Senate Presidency. The further parameters to making this choice include giving a sense of belonging to the largest ethnic group in this region. It will be fair to allow the larger ethnic group in the region to produce the Senate President considering the stabilizing impact this would have on the polity.

Equally important is the need to ensure balance in the religious configuration of public offices. The President-elect is a Muslim as the head of the executive. It is thus logical to ensure the head of the legislature, the Senate President and Chairman of the National Assembly is a Christian. The Deputy Senate President should then be a Muslim which would even out with the position of Vice President that is locked down for the vice president already.

We appeal that these considerations be made and agreed on ahead of the convening of the Eight National Assembly. This way, the Senate would take off on a good note and avoid being plunged into a crisis situation that could truncate the people’s yearning for change.

Our belief is that now that the elections are over the driving force for the nation should be national interest and the election of the Senate President is your first opportunity to reassure


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