Kingibe: I’ll Ensure Abuja Indigenes are Appointed FCT Minister, Mayor

Emameh Gabriel in Abuja

The Labour Party Senator-elect in Abuja, Ireti Kingibe, has promised to hit the ground running with the push for a mayoralty status and ministerial slot for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to give indigenes of the city a sense of belonging.

Kingibe stated this yesterday during an interface with journalists in Abuja as part of her routine to appreciate the people of the FCT who voted for her in the February 25 elections.

wo days after a High Court of the FCT scheduled April 24, 2023, to hear a suit by Abuja’s original inhabitants seeking that the Nigerian capital be granted the full status of a state like the existing 36, and with its own state governor.

Responding to questions on the demand by the original inhabitants of the Abuja seeking a full status of a state for the FCT with a governor, Kingibe said: “The status of the FCT is constitutional, and I personally cannot do anything until the constitution is amended.

“The status of the FCT is already determined by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

She, however, promised that upon resumption, she would explore other available windows to commence the process that could help the people secure total control of their own affairs such that would guarantee them those rights and privileges enjoy by other states of the federation.

The LP chieftain said: “If you understand the physiology of a woman, we don’t jump straight to the biggest things. We start taking them small by small till we get them all.

“I am going to start by pushing for a mayoralty for the FCT where we can have more control of the things that happen in the FCT in an executive way. Then we will set the bar higher and push for the president to appoint a minister of the FCT under North Central or any platform he wishes as long as the person comes from the FCT. That is where I am going to start from.”

When asked if she was aware that she has taken a key position from the indigenous people of the FCT, she said though she was not aware of such, it would be wrong for anyone to feel cheated as the FCT is not under a monarch.

Kingibe said: “Not at all! Because the truth is I  only ran because the chiefs asked me to. And if you look at the history of FCT, we have had several senators that were not indigenes. We’ve also had a senator that though was indigene, wasn’t Gbagi. The truth is that this is not a monarchy, it’s a democracy.

“The people are free to vote for whoever they feel will serve their interests at a particular time. Earlier on, we had senators that were not indigenes. Now you’ve come to one that has lived here. A lot of the chiefs their nickname for me is de facto indigene. At this point in time, they obviously felt I would serve their interests.”

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