Forum of former National Assembly members of the South South zone who expresed delight in the recent zoning of the Presidency of the Senate to South South has commended the All Progressives Congress(APC) for the promise to review the zoning criteria

The forum that seemed not to be in tandem with the microzoning that adopted Senator Godswill Akpabio as the choice of the party for the Senate Presidency is now advocating for non ranking member to be considered for the Senate Presidency.
Of the seven senators elect from the Zone only Senator Akpabio is ranking, the rest including the former national party chairman of the APC Adams Oshiomhole are all first timers.
Oshiomhole happened to be one of the contenders for the race of the Senate Presidency before the party’s choice of Akpabio

Former reps member John Agoda who read the position of the forum noted that the leadership of the Party recently clarified that the earlier zoning of respective offices to geo-political zones and individuals will be reviewed subject to a wider consultation.
“This clarification has brought relief and succour to the people of the South-South Zone as it has opened the democratic space for the APC senators-elects from the Zone (seven number) who may wish to exercise their rights to contest for the Office of the Senate President, to do so without encumbrances.
“The Forum notes that it is the prerogative of Senators-elect of the National Assembly to choose their Presiding officers to wit: President of the Senate, Deputy President of the Senate, and other Principal Officers.
“The Forum further notes that unlike the House of Representatives where only ranking members can aspire to the Speakership and Deputy Speakership positions, all Senators-elect are qualified to contest for the offices of Senate President and Deputy Senate President.

“For the avoidance of doubt and purpose of clarity, the Senate rules, Order 3(3)(a) state as follows: The election of the President of the Senate shall be conducted in the following manner:

a) A ilSenator-elect, addressing the Clerk, shall propose another Senator-elect to the Senate to be President of the Senate and shall move that such Senator-elect “Do take the Chair of the Senate as President of the Senate.” Another Senator-elect shall second the nomination.
b) A Senator elect when nominated and seconded shall inform the Senate whether he or she accepts the nomination. He/She may then proceed to address the Senate,

“We further note the provision of Section 14 (3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as Amended), which states: “The composition of the Government of the Federation or any of {ts agencies and the conduct of its affairs shall be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the federal character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity, and also to command national loyalty, thereby ensuring that there shall be no predominance of persons from a few states or from a few ethnic or other sectional groups in that Government or any of its agencies’’.

“In compliance with this Constitutional position, the country’s ethno-religious, cultural, and regional diversity and balance must be considered.

“In this context, the existing arrangement, whereby the office of the President of the Senate, the Deputy Senate President, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives are rotated between Northern and Southern Nigeria, be strictly adhered to.

“We strongly commend, appreciate and applaud the leadership for zoning the Office of the Senate President to the South-South and urge that this zoning be sustained.

As former members of the National Assembly, he said they believe and demand that all persons elected as Principal Officers of the 10th National Assembly should be above board and people of integrity and without blemish.

He expressed gratitude and support for the decision of the President-Elect, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and APC National leadership in zoning the Senate Presidency to the South-South.

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