A prominent member of the All Progressives Congress, (APC), Mohammed Murtala is urging the newly-elected senators to support Senator Barau Jibrin, member of the 9th National Assembly from Kano State, in his quest to become the Senate President in the 10th Assembly.
In this interview with Voice of Liberty, the APC chieftain canvasses the reason why the Senator deserves to lead the Upper Chamber in the forthcoming 10th Assembly. Excerpts:
Que: Sir, can you kindly introduce yourself and tell us your request?
Ans: My name is Mohammed Murtala, a member of the All Progressives Congress, (APC). I am appealing to the newly-elected senators to support the candidature of Senator Barau Jibrin in his quest to become the Senate President in the 10th Assembly, by God’s Grace.
Que: Why are you spearheading this cause, in view of the fact that there are several other candidates for that position from other regions, particularly the South-East, such as Senator Orji Uzor Kalu…
Ans: Politics is a game of numbers…When doing any political permutations, we always consider the total number of votes cast by any region for any candidate, for whatever position. If you consider the fact that the South-East geo political zone of Nigeria, where Orji Uzor Kalu is from, were only able to garner 127, 000 votes for the APC in their region, whereas in the North-West geo-political zone gave the highest vote, at 2,884,132 – which represents about 32% of the total votes gained by the Party in the 2023 presidential election. This is undoubtedly one of the principal reason why the North-West region deserves this position.
Secondly, Senator Kalu has barely spent four years in the Upper Chamber, while Senator Barau Jibrin spent a full term of four years in the Red Chamber. These two reasons I cited for you justifies our bid to get the support of Nigerians, and especially the North, for Senator Barau’s candidature.
Now, if you critically look at the most prominent positions to be filled come May 29th, the South-West have the Presidency, in the person of the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu; the North-Central has Abdullahi Adamu, who is the Party’s Chairman. The North-East have the Vice-Presidency slot, occupied by Kashim Shettima. However, our North-West geo-political zone has no any prominent position in the new dispensation. This is the zone that has given the Party the highest number of votes, To me, and to any discerning person, is democratically unfair, That is why we are canvassing that the Senate President’s position to be zoned to the North-West geo-political zone in the spirit of fairness. That is our position.
Que: Some may not agree with your position, on the grounds that fostering another Muslim candidate on Nigerians is not healthy for the Party…
Ans: (Cuts in)…The issue in contention is not a religious one. In terms of democracy, the core principles is not in any way religious; and therefore, the issue of whether a candidate for any position, is a Christian or a Muslim should not arise. It is all about votes…Also, it is not about tribalism or sectionalism. It is neither about whether any candidate is Hausa Igbo, Fulani, Yoruba or any other tribe, because such is not recognised in our Constitution. That is what we are emphasising upon. As Nigerians, we must endeavour to avoid pitching any situation thought the lens of tribalism, sectionalism or religion and come together as one united people for a better nation.
That is why we are soliciting for the support of our Senators-elect to accord maximum support to any of the ranking lawmakers from the North-West to emerge as the Senate President.
Que: Lastly, what is your message to the Party leadership regarding your candidate’s quest for the Senate Presidency?
Ans: As I said earlier, politics is a game of numbers…It is about votes, about number of votes cast by the majority of the people, and we have proven our mettle, by having the largest number of people, of voters who cast their votes for the Party, and therefore deserve a fair hearing and reward for our hard work. We should not be taken for granted. It is neither about any battle of fight. We must tell ourselves the truth; and those in the position to do the right thing should do so, and be seen to have done so, in order to ensure that in future the people who did their best among all others to ensure the success of Bola Tinubu to emerge as the next President of Nigeria do not feel disenfranchised.
The North-West should be adequately rewarded for their effort.