Defection: Senators Will Consider National Interest Over Political Affiliation, Says Ita Enang

nigerian-senate1The threat of defection by aggrieved Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) senators to the All Progressives Congress (APC) will not affect the activities of the Senate when it resumes next week, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Rules and Business, Ita Enang, has said.

His comment comes on the backdrop of recent disclosure by Senator Bukola Saraki and others that they will individually announce their defection on the floor of the senate at resumption of plenary.

Enang (PDP, Akwa Ibom North), however, told reporters yesterday in Abuja that the planned defection would not be of significant impact in the upper legislative chambers because the lawmakers are “responsible senator who are always interested in the unity and progress of the country”.

He said the senators always considered the interest of the country first before thinking of their political affiliations.

Enang added: “The senators see themselves as one. What is paramount in their minds is how to develop the nation. We will all work together as a single body to address issues dispassionately”.

He refused to comment on allegations that PDP lawmakers were demanding automatic tickets for 2015 to remain loyal to the party.

“The issue of defection is a matter being anticipated and I would not want to make comments on such issues”, Enang said.

He stressed that the senators, on resumption next week, would start deliberations on the 2014 budget.

The senator said since last year’s appropriation life span terminated on December 31, the National Assembly has the responsibility to ensure that the 2014 Appropriation Bill is considered and approved early to enable the executive begin its implementation.


    Tribalism has been a major problem to the development of our nation and our community. A Nation divided against herself will not be able to develop as it ought to be. Such is the present case of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which is currently having an adverse effect on the Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun.
    Federal University of Petroleum Resources is the first of its kind in Africa and the sixth of its kind in the world. It is a school aimed at training students on better ways to harness and efficiently utilize the greatest God-given Natural Resources of Nigeria.
    With my description above, a reader should easily conclude that Federal University of Petroleum Resources should be the best university in Nigeria but you and I know that the reverse is presently the case. In fact, as a reader, you might be hearing the name of this school for the first time.
    Delta State seems to be one of the biggest oil-producing states in Nigeria. As a result, propositions were made that it should harbor this great institution despite great competitions by other geopolitical zones in Nigeria. Since 2007 that the school started, it cannot even boast of 10 sound buildings, Engineering Workshops, Comfortable Hostel to cater for its students (less than 2000 students), COREN’s accreditation, PTDF recognition, Federal Government Recognition, World Class learning environment and lots more that it deserve.
    The school has faced so many challenges and it took a bold step by students in 2011 by protesting to get a 2-year NUC accreditation. A rapid recent development occurred in the school immediately after NUC sent their representative, Prof. Al-Hassan Lawal Bichi to oversee the administration of the school. Shortly, tribalism sets in again, the Urhobo’s requested for an indigenous leader for the university. This threw the university into moment of seeking for a suitable Vice-Chancellor. Thank God for the efforts of Senator Bamanga (The Pro-Chancellor) and his team for the successful but tedious search to fulfill their requirement.
    Location of this kind of university should be in a welcoming community. The Ugbomro community has not been so welcoming to the students and the entire school. The community youths have met students while on their duty as students to injure and extort them of the little provision made by their parents/guardians. In addition to these, students have been robbed in their apartment. This same set of youths, involved in these evil acts arose and locked the gates of the school which lead to an obstruction of the ongoing examinations. The reason for these act was because there was no member of the community (even when they are not qualified) in the recently employed staffs of the school.
    The struggle for the school to meet up with the general academic calendar was also interrupted. Currently, many members of the community are working as cleaners, security, administrative officer etc but these youths didn’t consider these before their actions. Only the qualified should get the job.
    Delta State Government has failed to cater for its youth and this has resulted into great problem for the school in the community. I hereby call on the government of Delta States and Ministry of Youth empowerment (if there be any) to look into these issues and correct them.
    Niger-Delta Development Commission, I also charge you to put up plans to check into the agony of these youth because they are surely causing more havoc to the development of Federal Republic of Nigeria than any good they might be doing
    Now, to the Federal Government of Nigeria, this school offers one of the courses that the federal government spends money on yearly for distant learning (Marine Engineering) but the Federal Government has not considered strengthening this school to offer the course in world-class standard but rather, they prefer spending the money abroad (Underutilization of Resources). With respect to this point of view, it is either the Federal Government is not aware about the school or they do not care about the school
    To the Ministry of Petroleum, I believe you should be responsible for drawing the attention of the Federal Government to this school but nothing as such has been heard. Even Petroleum Trust Development Fund (PTDF) do not recognize the school
    As far as I am concerned, it takes the Federal Government less than six (6) months to equip this school to meet up to the World Class Standard. I hereby charge the Honorable President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan), The Honorable Minister of Education, The Honorable Minister of Petroleum (Dr. Allison Diezani-Madueke) to arise to these issues and resolve it on time.
    I weep not only for myself but for the future of every Nigerian youth. The Students of Federal University of Petroleum Resources have been trained under the platform of Excellence and Relevance and it is reflecting in their lifestyle as they have not launched a revenge blow despite the wickedness meted on them and their school by the youths of Ugbomro community. I plead with all those involved to act fast

    Yours in the Service of my Fatherland
    ONNI, Joseph Yusuf


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