Jonah Jang, senator representing Plateau north senatorial district, has come under attack for a controversial comment credited to him.
While speaking on a radio programme on Jay 101.9FM on Jos, Friday, Jang was quoted to have said “the senate is not for young people.”
According to him, “senate is the place for elders. The house of reps (representatives) is for young people. So, senate in any country is not meant for young people.
“Don’t have any heart attack. In Hausa they call it ‘Majalisan Dattijei.’ Dattijei means elders, The assembly of elders. The elders are supposed to be in the senate.”
The immediate past governor of Plateau state was also quoted to have said “I enjoy what is happening in the house of reps.”
He added that they (the representatives) are “bubbling with youthful exuberance and when they bring things, then we look at it as elders.
“But all the same, we have some few young people in the senate who are learning very fast.
“We are not saying that it (the senate) is closed to young people altogether. There are certain people that come as stars, you can’t rule out that. We have seen Macron in France.”
Since making the statement, the former governor has come under backlash from some Nigerians on the social media.
While some accused him of being inactive in the senate, others said he should forget about getting re-elected.
Okegbeni Azeez, a Twitter user, taunted him, saying the senate is rather for “old people who keeps sleeping at plenaries”.
“But rather it is for the old people who keeps sleeping at plenaries and makes no contribution or moved a single motion all through the year,” he wrote.
But rather its for the old people who keeps sleeping at plenaries and makes no contribution or moved a single motion all through the year. Mr Jonah Jang, well done sir… https://t.co/eeNQOrNyLc
— Okegbemi Azeez (@Okegbemiazeez) February 4, 2018
Another user with the name Hotch Zeit1607 said the former governor’s comments are understandable.
But added the upper chamber is, rather, “a safe haven for those who looted their states dry.”
“If you are good enough, you are old enough,” he added.
Yes we understand. It's a safe heaven for those who looted their states dry. #ifuaregudenoughuareoldenough
— hoch-zeit1607 (@zeit1607) February 4, 2018
Another user with the name Jubril Miko said Jang is “nothing but a bench warmer.”
Well said zaharadden. He is nothing but a bench warmer.
— Jibrilmiko (@Jubryl2) February 4, 2018
Similarly, a Facebook user with the name Celestine Odogwu said the senator is being paid “seating and sleeping allowance.”
He wrote: “I never knew this one was in senate before now o, they will pay him seating and sleeping allowance I guess because he wasn’t active as a governor.
Alausa Samuel also disagreed with Jang on Facebook, saying what should be considered is the readiness of any candidate to serve, and not their age.
According to him, “it depends on who is ready to serve the people”.
“It does not matter weather the person is old or young. We have both of them there at national assembly, Saraki, Dogara, Dino Melaye and even Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi state they are all young people.
“Judge for yourself.”
But some people agreed with the senator’s position, saying youth in the country do not support one another in their political ambition.
Sunday Okedinma, another Facebook user, said the youth are, rather, busy “kissing each other and having erection at BBNaija.”
“He is also right because no single youth will want to support another youth vying for political portfolio,” he further wrote.
“Yul Edochie of the gubernatorial candidate of the just concluded Anambra election is another example. Where the youth belong is entertainment, that’s what they love, they don’t have passion for politics.”