Nigeria: Dogara Sets Aside Party List, Gives His Alternative

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Nigeria: Dogara Sets Aside Party List, Gives His Alternative

The crises currently rocking the APC and its members in the NASS appears not to be anywhere near resolution. Speaker of the house Honourable Yakubu Dogara has once again refused to fall in line with the party’s wishes. The Chairman of the APC Mr John Oyegun had written a letter to Dogara in an attempt to urge him to bow to the party’s choice of members to fill the remaining principal offices of the house. This letter met with no more success than the ones sent earlier.

Responding to the letter from Oyegun, Dogara said that though he was loyal to the party and was aware of his responsibility to it since it was the platform on which he contested, he could not however ignore the principle of federal character and the tradition of the house of assembly of electing principal officers to reflect this principle. He said that he felt that failure to abide by this principle could lead to an inequitable outcome.

Dogara said “We feel strongly, that the issue of federal character in the election or appointment of principal officers of the House is a cardinal legal, moral and constitutional principle that should be respected by our party.” Following this declaration, the speaker suggested an alternative as follows:

  • House Leader zoned to north-west
  • Deputy House Leader zoned to north-central
  • Chief Whip zoned to south-south
  • Deputy Chief Whip zoned to south-east

With this zoning formula put forward by Dogara, Femi Gbajabiamila will not be eligible to hold any office since there is no remaining slot for south-west. If there is any point that can be taken from this, it is that the crises has not been resolved since the Gbajabiamila faction has totally rejected the issue of zoning as put forward by the Dogara faction.

As the NASS resumes sitting next week, it will be of great interest to Nigeria as they will watch with rapt attention to see what develops from this impasse.

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