Respect court ruling, appoint FCT indigene as minister, Reps tell Tinubu

The house of representatives has asked President Bola Tinubu to appoint an indigene of the federal capital territory (FCT) as minister.

The lower legislative chamber passed the resolution during plenary on Thursday following the adoption of a motion co-sponsored by Abdulrahman Ajiya and Gaza Jonathan Gbefwi.

In January 2018, the court of appeal in Abuja ruled that indigenous people of the FCT are entitled to ministerial slots as provided by the combined provisions of sections 147(3), 299, 14(3) & 42 of the 1999 constitution.

The court also declared that the refusal to appoint an indigene of FCT as minister constitutes a gross violation of the provisions of the constitution on fundamental human rights.

While leading the debate on the motion on Thursday, Ajiya said despite the clear provisions of the constitution and the court judgment, indigenes of FCT have not been represented in the federal executive council (FEC).

He said development amounts to “alienation, marginalisation, and underrepresentation” of the FCT indigenous.

“The equitable representation of all regions, communities and groups in government is necessary for national cohesion, stability and development,” he said.

The motion was voted for when it was put to a voice vote by Tajudeen Abbas, speaker of the house.

Subsequently, the lawmakers asked the federal government to comply with the judgment of the court of appeal and urged the president to appoint an indigene of FCT as a minister “in line with the constitutional obligation to treat all Nigerians equitably”.

The house also resolved to set up an ad hoc committee to investigate the “rationale behind the exclusion of FCT indigenes from ministerial nominees by successive governments” despite the ruling of the court.

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