OrderPaperToday– The North-east geopolitical zone presents rather peculiar midterm report findings on bills sponsorship.
While the senators from the zone scored the lowest number of bills tally compared to other geopolitical zones, the senator who tops the bills productivity chart is the lone female representative from the region.
The North-east senate contingent consists of 18 senators, including the senate president, Ahmad Lawan. While they have sponsored 71 bills in total, Lawan has no bill to his name. This means they have sponsored barely 9.9% of the total number of bills (716) sponsored by the 9th Senate from May 2019 to June 2021.
Borno state leads with 24 bills, while Adamawa is placed second with 20 bills. To round it up, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi, and Yobe have a total of 13, 6, 5 and 3 bills, respectively.
Looking at female representation, the North-east presents just one female lawmaker out of the eight we have had in the 9th Senate thus far. While the number is dismal, to say the least, Sen. Aishatu Dahiru Ahmed (APC, Adamawa-Central) seems to be holding her ground as a lone female lawmaker from the region. Aishatu leads the senators from Adamawa with 11 bills.
She tops the bills productivity chart, whereby five of her 11 bills have been passed. The bills passed include the establishment of four medical centres/teaching hospitals and one institution. Interestingly, Aishatu also appears third on the female senators’ bills chart and ninth on the newbies’ bills chart. Additionally, two of Aishatu’s bills are at the committee stage, while the remaining three have passed the first reading.
The North-east also boasts ten other new members, although they do not make the newbies’ bills chart.
Another lawmaker from the region, Sen Haliru Dauda Jika (APC, Bauchi Central), also appears on the ninth spot on the bills productivity chart with both his two bills passed. His bills are on Police Act repeal & re-enactment) and establishment of a police academy.
Furthermore, it would appear that it is now commonplace for ex-governors to retire to the National Assembly once they are done from their states. Presently the 17 ex-governors in the Senate make up 15.6% of the total number of 109 senators.
Thus it is no surprise that the performance of ex-governors once they make such transition to the Assembly is often keenly scrutinized. In view of this, the North-east is not short of ex-governors who are now senators. The region has three ex-governors in the Senate. They are Sen. Kashim Shettima (APC, Borno-Central), who has sponsored seven bills; Sen. Danjuma Goje Mohammed (APC, Gombe Central); and Sen.Gaidam Ibrahim Alhaji (APC, Yobe East), who have sponsored two bills each. They appear sixth, thirteenth and fourteenth, respectively, on the ex-governors bills chart.
Looking at the bills productivity of these ex-governors, it would be expected that given their political experiences, their bills ought to have gone far along the stages of being passed into law. However, none of their bills has been passed into law. Only one of Kashim Shettima’s bills is at the committee stage, while all their other bills have only been read for the first time.
Again, one would expect more from the North-east, considering that the senate president, Ahmed Lawan (APC, Yobe North), hails from the region. Notwithstanding, he is the only senator for the North-east who is yet to sponsor a bill. He scores lowest on the Senate principal officers’ chart. On the flip side, Sen. Bwacha Emmanuel (PDP, Taraba South) the Deputy Minority leader and the second principal member from the geopolitical zone, has sponsored seven bills in two years. He comes in third on the chart.
Rounding it up, the North-east has one of the longest-serving member that stands out. That is Sen. Mohammed Ali Ndume (APC, Borno-South), and he has sponsored 13 bills in the period under review. While his bill for the establishment of an army university in Biu has been passed, his other bills are still either at committee or first reading stages. He has been in the national Assembly since 2003. Ndume started in the green chamber representing Chibok/Damboa/Gwoza Federal Constituency and then moved to the red chamber in 2007.