The Second-Vice Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Monday Ubani, has revealed what informed the decision of some politicians to dump the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC for other political parties.
He blamed the nation’s constitution for the gale of defection, adding that politicians now cause crisis in their parties in order to defect to other ones since the constitution allows it.
Ubani noted that during the last national congress of the ruling party, some of the politicians saw that they have lost stronghold in their states hence their decision to defect to a more conducive party.
He also maintained that all the defections were due to high level of selfishness by those politicians and had nothing to do with the masses.
He pointed out that the gale of defections from the APC to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, by National Assembly members were totally for selfish interests.
Speaking with Sun at the weekend, Ubani noted that those politicians had found out that there were no chance of them winning the next election in their former parties.
“It is saddening because members of our political elite are terribly selfish. The people do not come into their consideration,” Ubani said.
“And we’re seeing it manifest in their behaviour and manners. Why are they defecting now? It is because most of them are likely to lose in their primaries.
“They’ve seen the congresses and most of them lost out in having their friend and cronies made state executive chairmen or leaders.
“So they feel it would be like that in the primaries. Hence they’re looking for a platform that would be conducive for them to come back to power. That is why you see the mass defections. It is not about us, or about giving good governance.”
Ubani said he was not happy with the way the legislature has handled important bills before it, noting that the lawmakers had abandoned some pressing issues laid before it and treated those of less importance for selfish reasons.
He added, “I’m not too happy with their rate of performance. There are some bills that have been hanging around the Senate chambers and the House of Reps.
“Those bills that have to do with the anti-corruption fight, such as the Whistleblower Bill is yet to undergo the normal readings that are supposed to take place. It is still an executive policy.
“It has not been enacted into law. And that again impinges on the fight against corruption. There’s also another one that has to do with money laundering, and so many other bills that would enhance the fight against corruption, which have been left hanging.
“And I have not seen this House take those bills like serious pieces of legislation that demand their attention. But we’ve seen their speed in passing bills that have to do with their personal interests.
“For example, when they dealt with electoral issues, we all saw how fast they deliberated on it and pass it, and even got all the state assemblies to concur swiftly. But the bills that pertain to the people and their welfare are not passed with alacrity. I’m also worried about their bogus salary.
“And on that I have gone to court. I have a pending matter before the Federal High Court in Lagos. They’ve not impressed me at all.
“There are things we expect them to do that have to assist in reducing the economic hardship Nigerians are passing through, particularly the fuel and power issues.
“In the light of all these and taking into cognizance how much they are earning, you will now begin to wonder what they’ve really contributed to the welfare of the people in terms of quality legislative enactment.
“It used to be like that in India till they changed their constitution and said that there’s no room for defection.
“So immediately you win an election with a political party, you remain there, or if you defect then you lose your position.
“They didn’t give room like Nigeria’s constitution that created condition for defection by saying ‘if there’s crisis.’
“Because what these politicians now do is to engineer crisis within their party, and then use that as an excuse to defect.”