Nigeria’s political space has been filled with tension and apprehension over who becomes the next Nigerian Senate President.
With the 2023 general elections over, the battle has shifted to the race for Senate President, ahead of the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly in June. There is a battle for principal positions, particularly, the position of the senate president in the upper chamber.
The Senate president is elected by the majority of the members of the senate in a direct election conducted within the hallowed chamber. According to the parliamentary tradition, ranking members – lawmakers serving two or more terms form the leadership of the parliament.
Aspirants for the top Senate positions, as expected, had made their interests known about their choice positions.
Interestingly, the choice of the next president would largely depend on the zoning of the office, among other principal offices, by the leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress. Rumour mills are high already that the party is throwing it to the Southern part of the country.
Therefore, expectations are high that the party leadership may microzone the office of the number three citizen to the southeast as part of moves to pacify the southeast geopolitical zone, having missed out on the presidential contest in all the parties when particularly the hopes for a president of south east extraction was quite high.
President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, following his victory at the just concluded 2023 general elections, had moved to form a government of national unity. The initiative to unify the polity was ultimately initiated to calm frayed nerves around the country and reunite the people.
Feelings are that the president-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu is freely disposed to the zoning of the senate presidency of the incoming 10th Assembly to the South-East to assuage the feeling of real or perceived disparity among the people, so as to create fairness and equity.
Among all the candidates vying for the position of the senate presidency from the southeast region, Senator Orji Uzo kalu (MON) as a PAN African and a national unifier stands out. He should be the leader of the 10th Senate as perceived by Nigerians.
Moreso, should the president elect, His excellency Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu decide to run an inclusive government by choosing a political heavyweight who is a member of the APC from the Southeast geopolitical zone, Sen Orji Uzo Kalu, the current Chief Whip in the 9th Senate is widely perceived as the ideal candidate.
Apart from Kalu being a south-easterner and a ranking principal officer in the senate, he is highly adored, respected, and welcomed by many of his colleagues as a bridge builder, whom the masses still confide in as a devoted Christian.
Moreover, being the senate president would help pacify the Christian community in Nigeria. This is considering that both the president-elect and the vice president-elect are from the same religious sect in a religiously diversified nation.
There is appeal to my other brothers from the southeast, Gov. Dave Umahi, Sen. Osita Izunaso and others who have the same interest to rally round our brother OUK,, so as not to miss this yet again, great opportunity.
Gov. Umahi is a new face in the senate, while Distinguished Senator Izunaso may not be as popular as Sen. Orji Uzor Kalu in the Red chamber.
O.O Ezenwa wrote in from Enugu.