The Senator representing Bayelsa Central Senatorial District, Senator Paulker Emmanuel, on Tuesday, protested the non-inclusion of any indigene from his state on the list of 47 career diplomats sent to the Senate by President Muhammadu Buhari, for screening and approval.
Paulker, who raised a point of order shortly before the commencement of plenary, told his colleagues that the development was a grave embarrassment to his people despite the fact that they had qualified kinsmen in the foreign affairs ministry.
“Me and two other two colleagues from Bayelsa State in this Senate were inundated with calls from our constituents, since the list was released, drawing our attention to the fact that no nominee from Bayelsa was on that list.
“Initially I thought those calls were misplaced but as we go through the record this morning, the facts that are available to us even at the Foreign Affairs Ministry, shows that at least we have two Bayelsans that are in the level of deputy directors.
“I believe that these two personalities can fit in to where these nominees came from. Equally on the list, there are some states that have up to three nominees.
“Non-inclusive of any Bayelsans on the list is a clear violation of our right in the Constitution. My only prayer is that before the committee considers this list, I implore you (the Senate President) and my colleagues to intervene through the committee.
“In fact, communicate to the Presidency of the omission so that justice can be done to the state called Bayelsa.”
Responding to the plea, Senate President Bukola Saraki said since the rules of the Senate did not allow for debate on any issue coming under point of order, the appropriate committee should take over the matter.
“Distinguished colleagues, in line with our rules, Senator Paulker discussed this matter with me and you know according to our rules under Order 43, there would be no debate.
“However, I am happy that the Chairman, Committee on Foreign Affairs, Senator Monsurat Sunmonu, is here and am sure they will take note of this observation while they carry out their work on this matter and I am sure also by tomorrow (Tuesday) they would have committed that to the Foreign Affairs Committee to work on that.”
Bayelsans may not take this omission lightly, at least not with the recent actions of the Niger Delta Avengers (NDV).