• Friday, June 21, 2024
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It will be unfair to Abuja if no indigene gets ministerial appointment — Olajengbesi

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Pelumi Olajengbesi, human rights attorney of Abuja, has said that it will be unfair to the residents of Abuja if President Bola Tinubu’s administration does not offer the FCT a ministerial position.

The managing partner of Law Corridor, stated this at a media discussion on social justice held by the firm on Friday.

According to Olajengbesi, the All Progressives Congress (APC) stressed that “two-thirds of all the States in the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja” are included in Sections 134 (1) (b) and (2) (b) while asserting that the FCT is a state during the 2023 presidential election.

When claiming that it needed 25% of the vote in the February 25 presidential election, Olajengbesi claimed that the APC government would be acting insensitively if it did not give the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) a cabinet position.

“For fairness, justice and equity, the APC-led government of President Bola Tinubu should not deny the Federal Capital Territory of a ministerial slot just as each of the 36 states get at least one ministerial slot,” Olajengbesi said.

“This is in line with Section 318 of the 1999 Constitution on federal character principle to promote national unity, foster national loyalty and give every citizen of Nigeria a sense of belonging to the nation.
“Also, Section 14 (3 and (4) of the 1999 Constitution is clear that the composition of the Government of the Federation must be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the federal character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity.

“The APC-led administration should give a sense of belonging to the aboriginal people of Abuja and give a ministerial slot to an indigene of the FCT just as each of the 36 states produce indigenes as members of the Federal Executive Council.” the human rights attorney explained.

Olajengbesi argued that no native of Abuja has been named FCT minister since Nigeria’s return to democracy in 1999, yet political parties still use the FCT as a state to secure the necessary constitutional votes to win the presidency.

He also went ahead listing past FCT ministers and their states of origin; the list goes thus:

Ibrahim Bunu – May 1999 to February 2001 (Borno State). Mohammed Abba Gana – February 2001 to July 2003 (Borno State). Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai – July 2003 to July 2007 (Kaduna State). Aliyu Modibbo Umar – July 2007 to October 2008 (Gombe State). Muhammadu Adamu Aliero – December 2008 to April 2010 (Kebbi State). Bala Mohammed – April 2010 to May 2015 (Bauchi State). Mohammed Musa Bello – May 2015 to May 2023 (Adamawa State) alongside his Minister of State, Ramatu Aliyu (Kogi State).