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Senate Presidency: North East Hopeful, As Tinubu ‘Pencils’ Audu Ogbeh For SGF


Audu Ogbeh

Audu Ogbeh

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BARING last minute changes, the South East geopolitical zone might have finally lost the position of Secretary to Government of the Federation to the North Central zone.

Investigation by The Guardian revealed that the plan to move the position away from the South East was thrown up by the National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s insistence that the South West should produce the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

It comes as a group of North Central lawmakers have distanced themselves from the purported endorsement of Femi Gbajabiamila as Speaker of the House of Representatives.

On Friday, a statement published in some national dailies under the North Central caucus purportedly endorsed Gbajabiamila with the names of Emmanuel Udende, Chris Adabah, Orker Jev, Mark Gbilah, and Adamu Entonu listed among the members.

But in a statement issued at the weekend in Abuja yesterday, the members whose names were among the 20 elected lawmakers who purportedly signed the endorsement said they were not consulted before the publication was made.

“We want to make it abundantly clear that at no time did we sit to endorse Hon. Gbajabiamila as Speaker. Our names were only added to the list and we didn’t sign the notice.

“We are still awaiting the decision of the APC on zoning of National Assembly leadership positions. Both our constituents and Nigerians should be guided,” the group said.

A member of the one of the committees set up to thrash out the issue of zoning of positions in the APC confided in The Guardian Friday night in Abuja that Tinubu has penciled down a one time National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Audu Ogbeh, to occupy the post of SGF.

The source disclosed that apart from positioning Ogbeh as the next SGF, the decision by the party elders to zone the position to North Central was to stop Senator Saraki’s determined campaign to succeed Senator David Mark as the next President of Senate.

“The game plan is to block Saraki’s chances and ensure that the South West gets the position of Speaker of House of Representatives this time around. The Tinubu camp believes that given the role they played in the emergence of Muhammadu Buhari as presidential candidate of APC and president-elect, it would be politically unwise not to produce one of the leaders of the two-chamber National Assembly,” he explained.

The source added that the South East had to be traded off easily on account of the visibility the zone enjoyed during the Goodluck Jonathan presidency, pointing out that the South West leaders argued that giving the post of SGF to the South East would amount to “rewarding an absentee candidate with high marks”.

It is believed that if the plan sails through, APC must have dramatically punished the South East for giving bloc votes to President Jonathan in the last election as well as rekindled the political rivalry between South West and South East.

Prior to the present plans to shift the position of SGF away from South East, the zone had already shortlisted three candidates for the post including former national chairman of All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), Ogbonaya Onu, former Governor of Anambra State, Senator Chris Ngige and current Secretary to the Imo State Government (SSG), Prof. Awurum.

Chairman of Ohanaeze State Presidents’ Forum, Chief Chris Eluemunoh, however, said it was disgraceful for Nd’Igbo to go can in hands begging for appointments from APC or the President-elect, General Muhammadu Buhari, stressing that the zone voted for Jonathan without apologies.

Eluemunoh who made the remarks during the State Presidents’ Forum meeting of the seven Igbo-speaking states, in Awka said: “Issues of federal appointments were constitutional obligations that every president of Nigeria, irrespective of the voting pattern of the people in an election, must obey.”

As the race for Senate President gathers momentum, Governor Ibrahim Gaidam of Yobe State has expressed “total and unreserved support” for Senator Ahmed Lawan’s aspirations to clinch the position.

In a statement in Damaturu, the state capital, yesterday, Special Adviser to the Governor on Public Affairs and Information, Abdullahi Bego, said: “Governor Gaidam believes strongly that at this pivotal moment in our nation’s history when the entire country is mobilized for positive change, the Senate needs a leader who has the requisite experience, knowledge and network to organise and bring fellow senators around the issues that are uppermost in the minds of all Nigerians – security, jobs, education, quality healthcare, electric power supply, among others.

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  • Glover

    I suspect that in the either near or distant future, Buhari and Tinubu will fight each other. It just seems to be a question of time as Buhari consolidates his hold on power.

    • PolyGon2013

      And Igbos will be very happy about that.

      • free Nigerian

        Must u low-lives mention a tribe when speaking? Someone just mentioned two individuals and u responded to a tribe. God have mercy on you. It’s quite disgusting how tribalistic u guys still are by this age and era

        • free Nigerian

          When OBJ was having issues with Kashamu,Bode George, and even his own son and daughter,and etc where d ibos or other tribes in d midst? Why not get over this hate and get a life!!!

          • Olawale Adesoye

            It is not just to appoint anybody just like that. APC need to deliberate on who is to be our leader before giving post to anybody.

          • Maduagwu Ugochukwu

            In due course you all will understand that this country is called Nigeria. The greatest black nation on earth. full of warm and lovely people. I have met people from every part of this nation that inspired me beyond measure. so whatever you say here is strictly your personal opinion. wake up and start living. life is too short for your jelousies. better the condition of your nuclear family first and you have helped make this nation a better place.

        • PolyGon2013

          You a brain dead.

  • citiguy12

    Constructive conflict an resolution is an integral part of good management. Its not like your constant PDP “share the money” policy.

  • adanma7

    Did I read 7 Igbo speaking States??? Pray me, apart from Anambra, Imo, Abia, Ebonyi and Enugu States ( 5 Igbo States),

    Which other states in Nigeria have been ‘annexed’ into the igbo race??? DREAMERS!!!!!!

    • PolyGon2013

      Benue and Bayelsa.

      • umolu

        No,the other two Ibo speaking states are Sokoto and Borno.

    • Africanus

      if you are not a complete idiot, you would have learnt from your primary school social studies that both rivers and delta states have substantial igbo population. ada ewu!

      • Bello Barriga

        With due respect, please “attack the message, not the messanger.” Spouse abuser tow this line – instead of articulating their thoughts, they curse, abuse (physical), and call their better half names. Only BUBBLE-HEADS do such things – I hope you are not one of the BUBBLE-HEADS. Have a nice day

    • igboham


    • George Udochukwu

      70% of Delta State speaks Igbo,70% of Rivers State speaks Igbo and a fraction of Akwa-Ibom State speaks Igbo,a fraction in Benue State also.I think there is this Obioma community in Bayelsa State too.So what language do Amechi,Wike,Odili and mama p speaks..They all speaks pure Igbo language..So u never knew dt National Boundary Commission was solely created to undermine the population of the Ibos thereby creating regions in Nigeria.Now they want the Ibo man in Rivers to believe that he is not an Ibo man,that he is from SS…hehehehe..

  • john anderson

    with d ongoing selection of Apc to various political office, we as a nation has began to see clearly what direction they are taking us to. cos a situation were certain region of d country is sideline,which is what a region complained about during d goodluck jonathan regime, it means that nothing vital has been learnt and we are still going to be in d same pot n eating d same food. well i dont want to be too quick to judge, even though statistics is already showing so, but i will conclude by saying lets wait and see

  • free Nigerian

    Too much controversy and hassle about representation and power sharing in APC, I’m getting irked out. Didn’t they have a pre-election plan? I just pray we are not going to get through another traumatic phase in Nigeria….. if it’s all about working why d too much hassle about regional selections???

    • gabriel ajibola

      Purely politicking no need to fear

  • Anyanwumere Alagor

    Ndigbo’s support for Goodluck Jonathan in the last election and during his tenure was based on principle and there is no apology to any body for doing so; any Igbo person or groups going to the president-elect, Major General rtd. Muhammadu Buhari to say anything less is delusional and without authority of the Ndigbo. The person/group is acting on self interest and not on behalf Igbos. Buhari has been elected the president of Nigeria, not a section of it, he has a responsibility to carry the whole nation along in every aspect of his administration, otherwise, he will fail and history will not be kind to him. He should be reminded that this is his second coming; his first attempt as a Military Head of State did not prove him a statesman; he was biased and against the South, including Igbos. We did not trust him going by our earlier experience of his administration. The onus is on him to prove he’s a leader and a statesman. If he allows Asiwaju Tinubu to hijack and run away with his administration, then, he has himself to blame. Whatever is the outcome of APC sharing of positions, the constitutional provision should be honored.

    • Datti

      Where was Ndigbo when the Yar’adua cabal prevented GEJ from being acting President? In fact, ndigbo supported the cabal to exclude GEJ from the leadership position. Now that the Igbos put their eggs in a leaking umbrella, they want to enjoy where they did not sow. When the Yoruba nation was excluded from the come and chop syndrome, they transformed their AC to ACN and then to APC. I believe this is the time for the Ndigbo to rebuild the PDP they love so much and stop bickering over positions that they are not entitled

      • igboham

        I remember that The information minister at that time was an Igbo lady who made headlines condemning the cabal. The sharing of your booty notwithstanding – it is always good to tell the truth. I personally would not want any Igbo to serve in any Nigerian government. So you can take all your positions and shove it. We survived your real war – remember.

    • Abiodun Keshinro

      Asiwaju remains a force to reckon with in this new dispensation,when the Yoruba race was completely alienated by GEJ administration and the Ndigbo was given most juicy position of the government,where were you Alagor,let Yoruba race reap from where they sow.we all voted for the candidate of our choice and we MUST enjoy the bounty of our candidates.Ndigbo good luck.

  • Concerned Nigerian

    Well, the caution for GMB is that he cannot afford to have a House of Reps leadership that would owe some debt to a more adroit politician. He will not be able to deliver if the House, especially the leadership, has some godfather. The game has just started.

  • Redeemer

    I Laugh at those Who think the only Way the Igbos can hold on their Newly found status
    As trust worthy partners In The lower NIger delta is for them to go and beg Buhari……instead of working to build and solidify their upresent post election situation. As the most beautiful brides in Nigeria
    As a matter of fact the
    presidency of BUhari means nothing without thé support of thé south south..and the south east..that is why the yorubas and fulanis are falling over themselves to ensure that the much needed unity between the Igbos and thé south south does not materialise….. Igbo leaders Who go cap In hand to beg…….Buhari over only GOd Knows what do not seen to know what thé ALmighty GOd has done for them……….the Igbos have Held thé post of speaker..7 Times……what is In it for them again?….thé coming together of thé south south and south eeast is the Most powerful thing to happen in the histoiry of Nigeria…….no Fulani leader has ever émerger président without thé support of thé south south………….if the SE and SS ever make the mistake of begging Buhari over his constitutionnel responsabilité to the nation thèn they have themselves to blame………The Igbos will gather more respect if théy work to cément the relationship between them and the south south……….the Igbos hold thé 4 aces today In nigeria..let them work underground to rebuild PDP ….move APGA into PDP………..and transforme it into one of thé biggest and Most powerful parties In NIgeria…thé Fulanis ati yorubas dont want thé Igbos in APC…….why not create their Own……VERY soon thé fulanis Will kill APC thèn move back to PDP’. By which time thé Igbos Will be in contrôle of thé party……..thé Igbos. Should there foré stop regretting their support for was GOd sent…….To move the Igbos forward….