The All Progressives Congress (APC) has justified its endorsement of Godswill Akpabio, a former governor of Akwa Ibom, as the senate president of the 10th national assembly.
Speaking on Tuesday in an interview with Channels Television, Felix Morka, APC publicity secretary, said the party zoned the 10th assembly leadership positions to reduce the “scope of contention” among aspirants.
On Monday, the APC nominated Akpabio, who is from the south-south, as senate president while Barau Jibrin, senator representing Kano north, was recommended as deputy senate president.
Abbas Tajudeen was nominated as the speaker of the house of representatives and Benjamin Kalu was recommended for the deputy speaker position.
Speaking on the development, Morka said the APC is only offering “suggestions” on the leadership structure of the 10th national assembly.
He added that the “greater majority” of the aspirants were consulted before the party disclosed its position.
“The party is only offering ideas and suggestions,” he said.
“Sometimes, when people aspire, they are blindsided by their aspirants and don’t quite see the full national interest. The party is in a position to see the national interest.
“We consulted a greater majority of the party men and women, who are aspiring. We are simply offering recommendations because, at the end of the day, votes are to be taken on the floor of the senate and house of representatives.
“I am from the south-south and I don’t see why the south-south is ineligible for consideration. After all, no senate president has come from that region since 1999 — in this dispensation.
“We haven’t had that. Other regions have had some representations. For instance, five of them held that position from the south-east.
“That does not mean that the south-east is ineligible or unfit to produce the senate president, every region of this country can.
“But there is something else that we are concerned about; it’s called national interest, equity, inclusion, and a sense of ownership.”