South East Development Commission Bill: Speaker Dogara’s Unjust Ruling Reinforces Agitation for Biafra

We Must Improve On Successes Of 2015 Elections - Dogara

For the first time in the history of Nigeria’s House of Representatives, a voice vote that was overwhelmingly in favour of a bill seeking to establish the South East Development Commission  was killed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, who ruled in favour of the nay vote and against the voice of the people.
The ruling by  Speaker Dogara, a northern Christian and minority from Bauchi State, brought to the fore the long-running issue of marginalisation of South Eastern Nigeria which has given rise to louder agitation for a Biafra Republic.
The ruling forced lawmakers from the South East zone to stage a walk out.
Leading the debate during plenary, Rep. Chukwuka Onyema (Anambra-PDP) said that the bill would seek to tackle poverty and ecological problems confronting the region.
He said that the bill also sought to receive and manage fund from the federation account for the development and rehabilitation of roads and other infrastructure in the region.
The House Minority Leader, Rep. Leo Ogor (Delta-PDP), said the bill will address most of the issues affecting the region.
“This country cannot continue with the situation where we come to Abuja every month to share money. I think every zone deserves such commission because it will make everybody look inward.
“This nation needs to be restructured, we cannot continue the way we are going,” Ogor said.
For a Speaker, who has pretentiously preached justice and equity in Nigeria at every fora and who emerged a speaker against all odds, being a minority, to stand against the voice of the majority and the voice of God, is another reminder why Nigeria can hardly remain one and why the realisation of the Republic of Biafra is inevitable.

Even the argument by Hon. Sani Abdul ( APC Bauchi) that the timing of the bill and the agitation of Biafra is “suspicious” smacks of hypocrisy of the highest order as the two issues are unrelated. Hon Abdul, is one of the lawmakers that championed the establishment of the North-East Development Commission.

The bill for the establishment the North East Development Commission did not just receive the support of South East lawmakers, it was indeed conceived by south easterners at the last 2014 National Conference.
This was done out of sympathy and solidarity with the north-east for the devastation suffered by the zone as a result of the Boko Haram insurgency. The South East Zone is a majority ethnic group that has contributed very significantly to the development of Nigeria and deserves every attention accorded other geo-political zones.
It was even more painful that other geo-political zones as represented in the House of Representatives fully supported this bill but speaker Dogara, who has a litany of corruption allegations against him and who could hardly stand for the truth and liberate himself from the shackles of the cabal, single-handedly killed a bill seeking to enthrone equity and justice in Nigeria.
Such sloppy behaviour as we have seen in the unnecessary detention of the IPOB Leader, Daniel Kanu, detention of Capital Oil boss, Ifeanyi Ubah, disobedience to court orders, unwarranted and unprecedented killing of innocent children, young men, women and elderly people in Southern Kaduna, Benue, Enugu, Anambra, Delta and other states by Fulani herdsmen is fast and furiously fanning the embers of disunity in Nigeria.
Speaker Yakubu Dogara, a Christian, who believes in the existence of the Almighty God and knows the consequences of his action should not be remembered as one of those who hastened the inevitable dissolution of Nigeria in the absence of a restructured federation to ensure justice and equity.
While we commend the South East lawmakers for staging a walk out to protest the anomaly and to continue to tow that line on other issues pertaining to the marginalisation of the zone in order to ensure justice and equity for the region, we call on Speaker Yakubu Dogara to follow the part of justice in good time!



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