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NASS REPUBLIC: Gbajabiamila’s treatise on ethnicity, religion. One other story and a quote to remember



The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, last week, asserted that ethnicity, and religion influenced the outcome of the February 25 National Assembly election.

One other story from the National Assembly was also reviewed within the week under review.

1. Gbajabiamila’s claim on ethnicity, religion

Gbajabiamila hints at removal of direct primary clause from Electoral Act Amendment Bill

Gbajabiamila, on March 15, claimed Nigerians voted along ethnic, and religious lines during the parliamentary election.

The Speaker made the claim when he spoke at a meeting with members of the House of Reps Press Corps in Abuja.

“It was about a lot of other things. It was about religion. It was about ethnicity. It was about so many other things which I hope that as we develop as a nation, one’s election would be based solely, or at least mostly, on his or her performance on the floor and in the constituency,” he asserted.

Gbajabiamila’s claim may not be further from the truth, and does speak to the need for Nigerians to rise above primordial sentiments in the recruitment of its leaders.

It, therefore, calls for greater attention to be paid to the higher ideals of competence, character, and capacity in determining who they vote for.

The Speaker, however, has to apportion appropriate blames to politicians who abandon issue-based campaigns and whip up ethnic, and religious sentiments during the electioneering period in order to amass votes.

Read also:NASS REPUBLIC: Surviving the Obi hurricane. One other story, and a quote to remember


Who said;
“For those of my colleagues who will be returning to the National Assembly, this should be a very important matter for the next Assembly to continue to deal with because we just cannot afford to continue borrowing. We should minimise it. I know it is not possible to eliminate it completely, but we should minimise it.”

Answer: See end of post

2. As Dogara rates INEC’s conduct of guber polls high

The immediate past Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, on March 18, praised the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for recording significant improvement in its conduct of the governorship, and state houses of assembly elections as against the loopholes experienced in the February 25 presidential, and National Assembly elections.

“I think there is a much better improvement than the process we witnessed during the presidential election,” Dogara said when he addressed Journalists after casting his vote at Gwarangah PU 007 in the Bogoro Local Government Area of Bauchi State.

Dogara may have spoken from his personal experience. Apart from this, some lapses that occurred in the presidential election were repeated by the electoral commission.

Indeed, there were logistic challenges as voting materials reportedly arrived late in some polling units across the country. In Plateau State, election in some polling units were postponed as electoral materials were mistakenly taken to another local government. Some electorates in Lagos were seen complaining that the INEC relocated their polling units without prior notice.

Above all, the reign of thuggery and violence that disrupted the smooth conduct of the polls especially in Lagos, amidst a sprinkle of same in Kano, Abia, Plateau, Edo, Rivers, among other states, did not tell good on the security arrangement the Commission put in place to ensure a free, and fair exercise.

Answer: Ahmad Lawan
The Senate President, Lawan, made the statement on January 12, 2023, when spoke at a ceremony to mark his 64th birthday in Abuja.

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