How does one become a Nigerian senator? This question was posed on Quora, a forum-like platform and this was one of the answers given:
Pj Ofodile said: "Pretend you care about the people and their needs. During the campaign share bags of rice, beans, groundnut oil, anything really, we are so cheap you can buy our conscience.
"Promise the people you will provide good roads, fix the electricity, fix the health care, it doesn’t matter just tell them you will fix everything. Tell the people you are here to bring change, all they need to do is vote for you.
"Hire a bunch of thugs to hijack the ballot box on the day of election, (This one is important). Win the election use your convoy of 20 cars to terrorize Nigerians because why not? God is passing, he needs to get to Abuja in 15 minutes."
While the above answer is no doubt, sarcastic and funny, the question remains unanswered. The 1999 Constitution provides the requirements necessary for an individual to be able to run for the office of a senator in Nigeria as follows:
The first requirement is that you must be a citizen of Nigeria. Also, if you have acquired the citizenship of another country, you will not be able to run for the office of Senate.
In order to be eligible to contest for Senate, you must be at least 35 years of age. There have been calls to reduce this to 25 years.
To contest for the Senate, you must have completed at least secondary school education.
4. Political party
The individual must also be a member of a registered political party and sponsored by that political party to contest in the elections. The Nigerian constitution and does not allow candidates to run as ‘independents’.
Any individual who is employed in the civil service either at the federal or state level and wants to run for Senate must resign the employment at least 30 days before the date of election;
6. Mental Health
Any person adjudged to be a lunatic or otherwise declared to be of unsound mind cannot run for the office of Senator in Nigeria. Very important.
7. Criminal Convictions
Individuals who have been sentenced to death or has been sentenced to imprisonment or a fine for an offence involving dishonesty or fraud are not allowed.
If within a period of less than 10 years before the date of an election to the Senate, the individual has been convicted and sentenced for an offence involving dishonesty or he has been found guilty of a contravention of the Code of Conduct, the person is also disqualified from being a Senator.
8. Financial Status
Any individual who has been adjudged or otherwise declared bankrupt under any law in force in any part of Nigeria is not allowed to run for the position of Senator in Nigeria.
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Meanwhile, the president of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, was reported to be meeting with members of the southeast caucus.
NAIJ.com reported that the meeting, which held at the residence of the deputy president of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, in Abuja is on the Independent Peoples of Biafra and military campaign in the South-East, code-named Operation Python Dance.
Watch this video as Nigerians speak on the need for age reduction in the Senate requirement: