10th NASS: APC zoning formula lopsided, unjust – Akeredolu

ONDO State governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has described the zoning formula released by the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the 10th National Assembly as lopsided and unjust.

According to the zoning formula approved by the ruling party, the South-South will produce the Senate President while the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives goes to the North-West.

Akeredolu, who doubles as the Chairman of the South-West of Governors’ Forum, said the arrangement reinforces injustice and inequality.

This was disclosed in a statement he signed and posted on his official Facebook page on Wednesday, May 10.

Akeredolu said the contents, intentions and motives of the zoning formula presented by the APC is an early sign of steps to ‘enclose’ the victory of President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

“It is trite to aver that it stands logic on the head that one geo-political zone, North-West in this regard, will be favoured with two presiding officers positions out of four while North-Central suffers the consequences for its innocence and shrewd loyalty by having none.

“It is an insidious permutation that North-East will be deprived in the face of the unsavoury generosity dispensed through two slots to a particular geo-political zone. It is self-repudiating for one to argue, therefore, that the Speaker of the House of Representatives cannot also emerge from the North-East. 

“Therefore, the move to zone the National Assembly leadership positions on the behest of interested personalities with perceived closeness to the President-elect manifestingly lays the dangerous foundation of distrust, needless suspicion even as it structures nothing but a combination of booby traps. We must avoid all these,” Akeredolu stated.

He added that the North should be allowed to play a stronger role in the selection process, especially for the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives.

“As leaders of the Party in their respective States, there cannot be a greater disservice to them that a consensus was yet to be reached when the NWC hurriedly released a dangerous tool for the opposition in the guise of a zoning formula. To me, even on this note, it’s unacceptable. 

“Does it not also exude a serious discomfort that the aspirants to the Speakership were not consulted, approached and effectively engaged before the purported zoning formula?” he asked.

Akeredolu praised the courage of the Speakership aspirants for their show of solidarity and objection to the “brazenly teleguided zoning arrangement that is skewed”.

He went ahead to state that the arrangement by the party promotes inequity.

 “This is an unworkable arrangement that reinforces injustice and enhances inequity, and I join them in rejecting this zoning formula. 

“I call on the NWC of our great Party to follow the path of purity and Justice. It is perhaps expedient that Mr. President-elect interrogates this skewed arrangement and give direction that reflects our collective commitment to equality and fairness.”

He advised the APC National Working Committee (NWC) to immediately summon the National Executive Committee (NEC) to agree on terms that would strengthen the Party.

The NWC of the APC had on Monday, May 8, zoned the leadership positions of the 10th National Assembly.

The NWC committee nominated Godswill Akpabio, Akwa Ibom, South-South, as the Senate President and Abass Tajudeen, Kaduna, North-West, as the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

This was disclosed by the National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Felix Morka.

Similarly, the NWC nominated Barau Jibrin from Kano, North-West, as Deputy Senate President and Ben Kalu, Abia, South-East, as Deputy Speaker.

The endorsement of the zoning formula for the 10th National Assembly followed a meeting held by the NWC to discuss the results of discussions and meetings with Bola Tinubu, the President-elect, and other stakeholders.

Commenting on the same issue, an APC supporter Dominic Alancha said the zoning arrangement should not be allowed to stand.

    He added that the decision might affect the Party in the 2027 general elections if not reversed.

    Alancha spoke on Arise TV Newsday programme on Wednesday, May 10.

    “If this decision is allowed to stand, it will mark the end of the independence of the National Assembly. The only way to balance it is to engage all members and consider all the other zones.

    “The South-West and North-East have both President and Vice presidents
    The most important thing is that all the zones should be carried along
    If it is not carried along, it will affect us,” Alancha said.

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