Contrary to a tradition where public and private establishments display portrait of the nation’s president, governor and head of the organization in the state, the Kwara State House of Assembly displays the pictures of its speaker, Dr Ali Ahmad, and that of Senate President Bukola Saraki.
Saraki was the former governor of the state.
However, some observers believed that politics in Kwara was different from what obtained in other places.
The picture of the state governor, Abdulfatah Ahmad, was also not displayed at the Assembly building. Apart from the Nigerian flag, the coat of arm and Kwara State’s logo, a visitor to the House would be lost as to who is the governor of the state.
An observer, who spoke with our correspondent on the issue, said there was nothing wrong the development, adding that, probably, the legislators’ action was informed by the need to assert their independence, albeit in a strange way. “I don’t think they mean any harm by not displaying the pictures of the president and the governor, he said.
“I think they want to prove that they are independent of the executive. However, making reference to Saraki’s case at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT), some people in Ilorin said the legislators, believed to be loyal to Saraki, have taken their protest far.
A youth activist in Ilorin, Mr Musa Aliyu, said the development was embarrassing to Kwara State, adding: “Even if they don’t want to display picture of President Muhammadu Buhari, why don’t they put that of Governor Ahmed? Does that mean Saraki is still the governor of Kwara State or that he is the president of Nigeria?”
“It is a very wrong form of protest. This means they do not recognise constituted authority. Let them contact the National Orientation Agency for the code of ethics of Nigeria because it stated that we should display the photographs of the president and governor of the state.
“The president is a symbol of our unity, just like the coat of arm, national flag, currency and other things that identify us as a nation.” Meanwhile, the immediate past chairman ?of the Nigerian Bar Association, Mobolaji Ojibara, said there was no demeanor for not displaying the photographs of the president and the state governor because Nigeria was operating a presidential system of government.
“Each arm of government has its leader, even though the president is the commander of the whole country,” he said.
“But, there is nothing bad in them displaying Saraki’s photograph, being the chairman of National Assembly and leader of the legislature in the country.” Efforts to hear the reaction of the Assembly was not successful.