Mark Seeks Automatic Tickets For PDP Senators In 2011

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By Azimoh Momoh Jimoh, Abuja
All politicians aspiring to become senators through the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2011 election may have to retrace their steps as such vacancies may not exist.

Moves to actualise this ambition have been spearheaded by the President of the Senate, David Mark.

Under his efforts to achieve this political feat, Mark put together a special dinner for all members of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP in his official residence at Apo Legislators' quarters in Abuja on Wednesday night.

He charged the PDP leaders at the dinner, led by the party's National Chairman, Prince Vincent Ogbulafor, to issue automatic tickets to all serving 87 senators to facilitate their re-election to the Upper Legislative Chamber in 2011.

Mark said: "Every four years, after an election, people begin to clamour for their own local government to produce the next senator. In other words, there are people back home now in our various constituencies who are saying it is the turn of their local government to produce the next elected person. It should be the turn of the local governments who are represented here now; to produce the same people in 2011."

According to him, the move would ensure that legislative experiences already gathered by this crop of lawmakers were not wasted.

Mark explained that unlike the executive and the judiciary, the legislature, which he described as the hallmark of democracy, needed to be sustained with growing experience of the legislators.

Mark stated that the serving senators had proved to be reliable, competent and knowledgeable, and merited automatic tickets.

His said: "These harmonious, peaceful and cordial relationships are needed ingredients for development. We must sustain an experienced and stable legislature which is the needed antidote for the sustenance and growth of democracy."

Responding, Ogbulafor commended the cordial relationship between the Senate and the Executive arm of government and urged its sustenance.

Ogbulafor stated that the PDP government had lived up to its billing and promised that the issue of automatic ticket would be considered in due course.

Chairman of the PDP Elders Committee, Senator Ike Nwachukwu, urged elected and appointed public officers to make the issue of service delivery and the welfare of the citizens their watchword.

Meanwhile, Mark has described the death of Senator Martins Yellowe, as a great loss to the polity and medical profession.

Yellowe, a professor of Psychiatry Medicine, died yesterday at the National Hospital, Abuja after a brief illness.

Mark, in a condolence message to the government and people of Rivers State, urged the family to take solace in the fact that Yellowe lived an eventful and accomplished life.

The Senate president said: "As a consummate politician, he was outstanding, he also excelled in his medical profession. His contributions to the political development of Nigeria will remain evergreen. During his tenure in the Senate between 1999 and 2007, it is on record that Yellowe sponsored the highest number of bills. We shall surely miss him. The Senate on its part will continue to tread the path of honour, integrity and service to the people which the late Yellowe stood for."

Mark further called on the government of Rivers State to immortalise the late senator.

C. Guardian

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