By Emmanuel Eche-Ofun John
The Nigerian Senate is structured to have Senate minority leader, who serves as the spokesperson of the minority party or parties, as the case may be.
The minority parties caucus in the 10th Senate had elected Senator Simon Mwadkwon, from Plateau State, as its minority leader, foreclosing the chance of other senators who showed interest in the position.
Senator Mwadkwon had barely stayed for six months when his election was, unfortunately, nullified by an Appeal Court in Abuja, thereby creating a vacuum.
In other to fill the vacuum, Senators on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) met on Wednesday and resolved to pick the next senate minority leader from the North Central geo-political zone.
The PDP lawmakers had argued that the North Central zone had been shut out in the power distribution in the country, particularly in the 10th Senate.
The senators said they would not micro-zone the minority leadership to any individual, but that the North Central Zone should produce the candidate, for equity, fairness and justice.
The PDP senators said they would want someone to fill the vacuum created by the annulment of Mwadkwon’s election because power abhors vacuum.
Going by the decision of the PDP senators to zone the seat to North Central, all look so bright for the senator representing Benue South Senatorial District, Comrade Abba Moro PhD.
Findings reveal that out of the 18 senators from North Central, only six are of the minority parties, with PDP having four and SDP having two.
The four PDP senators include Senator Abba Moro PhD, Benue South Senatorial District; Senator Akpoti-Uduaghan Natasha, Kogi Central; Senator Jiya Peter Ndalikali, Niger South; and Senator Onawo Mohammed Ogoshi, Nasarawa South.
Further finding reveals that out of the four PDP senators, only Senator Abba Moro is a returning senator. While Senators Ogoshi Onawo and Peter Jiya had served in the House of Representatives in the 7th and 8th National Assembly, Senator Akpoti-Uduaghan is serving a first term.
If leadership recruitment is based on experience, capacity, capability and intellect, especially for the position of the senate minority leadership that serves as the mouthpiece of minority senators, then Senator Abba Moro is most qualified and suitable for the job. This is without prejudice to the other senators who are equally qualified.
Senator Moro proved his worth in the 9th senate, with his eloquence, sagacity, versatility and carriage. He was Chairman, Senate Committee on Federal Character and Intergovernmental Affairs; Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Inter-Parliamentry Affairs; Vice Chairman, Senate Committee on Army; and member of several committees, including Interior, Appropriation, Defence, Air force, Aviation, EFCC and Anti-crime, etc.
He sponsored the most people-oriented Motions and Bills on the floor of the Senate, amongst which were bills on independent candidacy, local government autonomy, motion that sought an end to arbitrary tariffs hike by Pay-TV service providers, motion that sought to remove age barrier for job recruitment in the country, etc. In all, he sponsored over eleven bills, moved twelve motions and submitted five petitions.
As a way of giving back to his constituency, Senator Moro facilitated and executed over 50 verifiable projects, scattered across his senatorial district, to the admiration and applause of his constituents and Nigerians at large. His sterling performance in the 9th Senate earned him over thirty awards from both national and international organizations.
Senator Moro is a very humble person who respects authority but he’s not afraid of speaking truth to power. He’s not a careless talker; he knows when to talk and when to be silent.
With him in the saddle of the senate minority leadership, Nigerians will have an engaging, robust and balanced Senate that they will all be proud of.
Now that PDP senators have graciously zoned the seat to North Central, it’s instructive that they don’t make the mistake of not electing their loyal party man, the man the cap fits, as their minority leader.
Senator Moro has remained steadfastly with his party, the PDP, since 1999 to date, without defecting for once, and having been in the senate since 2019, he has gotten the desired experience to serve as the minority leader. The cap perfectly fits his head and there won’t be any regrets.