As the 10th National Assembly is set to open with Ireti Heeba Kingibe as the senator for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) after halting the 20-year representation of Philip Aduda, who has been in the Senate for 20 years, it is time for quality representation.
FCT suburbs and rural areas where the bulk of the indigenous people dwell have suffered untold hardship over the years with roads in deplorable conditions, absence of clean water supply, inadequate affordable healthcare and inadequate educational facilities.
The FCT ministers in the past, who are mostly from outside the territory, have usually concentrated in the high-brow areas where they line multi-billion-naira flyovers, tunnels, street lights and other projects, with no impact in the hinterlands.
Kingibe as the sole senator-elect is expected to work with other House of Representative-elects for Bwari/AMAC Federal Constituency, and the Abaji/Kuje/Kwali/Gwagwalada in addressing the developmental challenges in the territory.
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Available data shows that FCT rural communities, despite being so close to the seat of national power, have fared badly in the infant mortality rate with 110.8 per 1,000 live births, insecurity, poverty rate, and the ancillary development indicators are at a low point in the territory.
All eyes are on Kingibe to address the developmental challenges faced by the residents of the FCT. Women are known to be better managers of resources and she is expected not to be different.
However, if the representation, this time in the FCT fails to unravel the factors behind the age-long underdevelopment of the suburbs, then the clamour to have both an FCT indigenous minister and all representatives in the parliament would grow.
Uduak Edward wrote from Karu, Abuja