Written by Abdul Jelil Adebayo
The race for the Senate presidency is getting hotter by the day and the chicken will soon come home to roost.
June 11th, 2019 is not too far away as many are wont to think. Barring any unforeseen circumstances, it is certain where the pendulum will shift to. Indeed everywhere you go and the issue of the Senate presidency race is mentioned, Ndume is always top on the lips of everyone that is following the conversation with keen interest.
There are many factors that are giving Ndume the edge; he is not relenting, whether any godfather is supporting him or not. He has gone through that part before; less than 100 days to the 2011 elections, the godfather of Borno politics and the incumbent governor then, Ali Modu Sherriff had told Ndume that his (Sheriff’s) sandal would beat him in the contest for the Senatorial seat in Borno South Senatorial District. Ndume had no option but to cross over to the then ruling party, PDP and less than three months to the election he won, putting the godfather to permanent shame.
The same God that gave him that victory is still on the throne and He will do what He knows best. Putting those who think without them no one can survive to political shame. You don’t fight who God favours, ask King Saul, Adonijah Absalom, etc. Ndume has repeatedly told those who cared to listen that he is a son of a nobody and God has made him somebody by His grace. Going spiritual to an extent, David was a ‘nobody’ but God made him somebody. Abraham had no godfather but harkened to the instructions of God and today we all crave for Abrahamic blessing.
In the same vein, Methuselah was the oldest recorded man in the world but only a verse was attributed to him, while Solomon was 20 years old when God made him a king and we have so many chapters telling us about him and his wisdom. It is not how long you have been in the political arena, or even in the National Assembly, but how well.
Let all the contestants present their scorecard and let the senators judge and see who has performed better. Performance is not hearsay but factual achievements for everyone to see. And anyone who could do well with the little given can certainly do better and greater when much is accorded him. Ndume has proved this to the letter.
It is the truth that every senator in this 9th Senate is qualified to be the Senate president, but not every Senator can be on the driver seat and going by the present permutation that the North East geo-political zone should present the candidate, the elders and the stakeholders, including the masses from the zone have thrown their weight behind Ndume. Series of press conferences and support groups are clamouring for Ndume and he has said that it won’t be a do or die affair, but he is in the race to serve the people of Nigeria and not any godfather.
He has gone through thick and thin of political tutelage with scars and wounds to show for his battles with the hawks and lions in the wilderness of politics. And has remained untainted and always coming out victorious. He is not prodded by anyone, but his conviction to give back to the society for always staying behind him when the odds do not favour him. He wants to genuinely serve the nation and his people especially the internally displaced people of the North East. When party loyalists are mentioned, Ndume has proved to all that he is shoulder high, as his defence for party policies and ideas have been defended with all his might that consumed him in the process costing him his exalted position of a Senate leader. Today he can raise his shoulder and say without stammering that he has paid the price.
Ndume has promised that it will be an all-inclusive administration where every Senator will have equal access to the funds of the Senate. Before now it was the prerogative of the first among equals to determine who goes on foreign trips, but Ndume has promised that a committee will be in charge. He has promised to include former senators as consultants to gain from their experiences while in the Red Chamber. This is a noble desire and should be supported by well meaning senators. In summary Ndume wants to be first among equals because he has all the necessary qualities of a Senate president. He is bold and does not shy from speaking the truth. His shoulders are big enough to bear the burdens of the less priviledge, because he has passed through that road before. Those who have passed though his path have memorable stories to give. He is the man of the moment, the best option for the 9th Senate presidency.
– Abdul is an Abuja-based journalist