Please help me thank the speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, who took a decision that the Federal Government of Nigeria’s $22.7 billion loan would not be passed in the House without the consideration of the South East. The House Speaker sent the message to the Finance Minister and the DG Budget that he would not work to approve that loan. Recall when I wrote that the government had suspended the loan (possibly after the Speaker pushed back). Interestingly, the real suspension was from Mr. Speaker who made the upright decision to hold the accent in the House.
“I know there has been a lot of agitation about (the) South-east not benefiting from the loan. It is one of the reasons we haven’t considered the loan in the House. I’ve discussed with the Finance Minister and the DG Budget,” the statement read.
“It’s a matter that we’re looking at seriously. I’m hoping that there will be some kind of amicable resolution so that everybody will be carried along. Equity suggests that all zones must be carried along….”
The Senate despite agitations from South East senators went ahead and passed the loan: “Amidst disagreements and arguments which forced the Senate to a closed-door session that lasted for about thirty minutes, the Senate passed the loan about a fortnight ago”. It was painful watching Senator Abaribe (Abia, PDP) begging his colleagues, and they simply ignored him, and went ahead and passed this dubious loan.
Through fake news and misinformation, many people were deceived to think that South East senators did not send projects when other senators were sending, as though any President goes around with Three Stars exercise books asking for project lists from senators. In the South East, a 10-year old boy will tell you that there are no roads there and the only airport has been taken down for repairs; so, no one needs help to find what to fund in the South East. Of course, no one has shown me the lists submitted by senators from other regions because they did not submit any!
Senate President Lawan failed Nigeria but thank God for Speaker Gbajabiamila who is amazing. I call all Nigerians to thank and commend him for leading with fairness and justice to all Nigerians. He has served not just the National Assembly but the Nigerian Constitution and the Federal Character.
Personally, this is about fairness. It has nothing to do with me being from the South East. I am from Ovim (Abia state) where we do not really care about the government. We contribute money and develop our community. But that does not mean we do not pay tax.