African Outlook Online

Letters to the editor

Nigeria's SouthWest Ogun state nominates 3rd Eleven member to face other regions 1st team

Nigeria's South-West Ogun State nominates 3rd eleven member to face other regions 1st team


By Emmanuel Adey


Nigeria's President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan Thursday inside the Presidential Villa, Abuja, inaugurated the Presidential Committee on the Review of Outstanding Constitutional Issues, charging members of the committee chaired by a former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), retired Justice Mohammed Belgore, to see the “assignment as an important step in our nation’s search for a more enduring union. The committee would have been a good one but for the mixture of intellectuals with quacks.


Here are the members of the committee as released by the Presidency:


1. Justice Mohammed Belgore - Chairman
2. Sen. Udoma Udo Udoma - Vice Chairman
3. Chief Ebenezer Babatope
4. Mr. Ledum Mitee
5. Dr. Abubakar Saddique
6. Ms. Comfort Obi
7. Mr. Peter Esele
8. Prof. Oladipo Afolabi
9. Prof. Jerry Gana
10. Barr. Tessy Ikimi
11. Mr. G.O.S. Miri
12. Amb. Babagana Kingibe
13. Amb. Jibrin Chinade
14. Alhaji Abubakar Mustapha
15. Prof. Anya O. Anya
16. Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife
17. Alhaja Salimot Badru
18. Hajia Najatu Mohammed
19. Mr. Ferdinand Agu
20. Alhaji Wakil Mohammed; and
21. Barrister Halima Alfa.


Looking at the list critically, one would see that Ogun State is poorly represented. Or can we say Salimot Badru is competent to be a member of the constitution drafting committee of the Federal Republic of Nigeria? Can we say she is the best (female) Ogun State can offer?


Ogun State that produced the likes of Funmilayo Kuti, Madam Tinubu, Kuforiji Olubi etc is now producing a candidate that belongs to the 3rd eleven of its team as its 1st team captain.


First of all, must people use appointments to pay for sexual favors and put our collective destiny in jeopardy? I know one of the big questions that will be running through people’s mind is how come? Who nominated her? What’s the yardstick?


This is the same questions that I have been asking myself since yesterday because I tried to check her dossier in relation to the importance and significance of the job of constitutional amendment given to her and I realized that she’s not fit to be a part of the committee.


In the recent past, Ogun State has been badly represented at the national level, the state produced incompetent ministers like Sharafa Tunji Ishola, Jubril Martins Kuye, and Lola Otegbola as the state representatives at the revenue mobilization committee. While other states are producing competent hands Ogun is promoting people without a University Degree as a Minister and members of constitution drafting committee.


This issue of bad nomination and bad representation is also affecting us in the south west region where the likes of Erelu Obada are taking up a ministerial post as a minister for state for Defense. Is she the best candidate to come from Osun for ministerial appointment? What is the yardstick for her appointment as a minister?


You will recall the imposition of a hairdresser on us a Speaker of the National Assembly representing the interest of the South-West, don’t forget so soon how she ruled the national assembly and how Yoruba’s were perceived then. Issues like that led us to where we are now when we cannot even produce any officer out of the first ten (10) in the Presidency.


I think people should find another way to compensate their mistresses or sex-mates, not with what will disgrace/pull us back more. Competent people should hold office not people without strong background. We want people with good antecedents and not people that have no meaningful impact on their society.


Hon. Mulikat was forced on Yoruba race to be the House leader but since she got the seat what impact has she made? Has she contributed positively to the advancement of Yoruba race? Is Yoruba getting better representation?


Of recent, South West especially Ogun State is lagging behind when it comes to presentation of quality people, why should the likes of Salimot Badru be seating on constitutional amendment committee while people with experience, exposure and maturity, the likes of Prof Mrs. Adamson, Dr. Mrs Doyin Awolowo, Olori Yetunde Gbadebo and so on are there without being given consideration for such important roles.


I can say categorically that Salimot will not contribute anything meaningful to the progress of the committee because she would be intimidated by the credentials and personalities of people involved from other states and other regions. If you are in doubt what was her role in the administration of Ogun State between 2003-2011? Was she able to marshal her points and stand her ground to face OGD? If she could perform effectively as a deputy Governor how can she perform well as a member of constitution drafting committee? What would she say she has as an idea when debating the likes of Prof. Jerry Gana, Amb. Babagana Kingibe, Prof. Afolabi or even Ebeno (Ebenezer Babatope)?


People should find a better way to pay back for sexual favors and not with issues affecting our collective destiny.


It will be recollected that a similar issue happened in Ogun State sometimes ago when Titi Oseni was forced on House members in Ogun State as the House of Assembly Speaker. The result is part of what we are still facing here till date.


I am not gender biased but I am just saying competent people with integrity, antecedents and intellectual competence are what we should be projecting as our representatives and not people without sound education.


As a Yoruba man, I am not pleased with most of the appointments coming our way these days but when Jonathan appointed Gbenga Ashiru and Adeshina Adewunmi from Ogun State I was pleased with their dossier but what can we say of Sarafa, Obada, Etteh, Mulikat, Lola Otegbola and Salimot Badru? Titi Oseni was also given a national honor for being “dishonorable”.


If we continue in this direction, south west will continue to face marginalization because we are going to the battle with our second and third tier army while first rate people likes Prof. Bolanle Awe, Kuforiji Olubi, Alakija are from the south west region for God’s sake.


Salimot Badru is a trained nurse and does not have any tangible role to play in constitutional drafting/review committee. She is not a trained Doctor so she is not qualified to be on the committee based on health matters and she even lacked the intellectual capacity to engage other northern contenders in “positive argument”. So South-West (Ogun) is poorly represented and if we continue in this manner I doubt it if we are going to have a say in this country in the next few years.


Emmanuel Adey wrote from Nigeria