By Shola Oyeyipo in Abuja
As more members of the House Representatives are awaiting the official position of the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on its zoning arrangement for the speakership, more lawmakers are already scheming to clinch the number one position in the House of Representatives.
While the Chairman, House Committee on Aviation, Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, representing Isuikwato/Umunneochi federal constituency of Abia State on the APC platform declared on Monday that she would contest for the position, the Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Hon. Abdulrazak Sa’ad Namdas (APC, Adamawa), also declared his intention to join the contest on Tuesday.
Namdas, a second term lawmaker representing Jada/Ganye/Mayo-Belwa/Toungo federal constituency of Adamawa State, in an elaborate declaration held at the Transcop Hilton Hotel, Abuja, Tuesday, told journalists that he has the blessing of his constituents to join the race, promising to give good leadership if considered for the job.
Similarly, Hon. Magaji Da’u Aliyu representing Birnin-Kudu/Buji federal constituency of Jigawa State has also declared interest in vying for the Deputy Speaker.
Aliyu, who spoke with select journalists in his office at the National Assembly, said he hopes to bring his legislative experience to bare in the day-to-day running of the House of Representatives in the ninth assembly.
Noting that as the Nigerian democracy grows, it requires competent and committed individuals with requisite experience and pedigree to build and strengthen our institutions, Namdas said: “I stand before you today to make a solemn declaration to seek the office of Speaker of the ninth House of Representatives.
“I am offering myself for the position of Speaker because the ninth Assembly deserves the best of leadership. I am convinced and I believe you are aware that I possess the necessary legislative and personal credentials to effectively lead the House to enviable heights. As spokesperson for the House, I represented and defended the legislature effectively for four years; hence I am better positioned to preside and speak for the House as Speaker.”
According to him, “Apart from competence, experience, untainted personal record and excellent leadership traits, we are presenting a new legislative charter, which is our contract with the Nigerian people; this is a contract that will be driven by good laws and ethical legislative practices. We are desirous to enter into a contract with the Nigerian people for the good of the nation.”
Also a second term lawmaker, Aliyu said if elected as a Deputy Speaker, it would offer him an opportunity to add value by working in collaboration with the Speaker to effectively relate with other arms of government.
“I have every qualification to become a Speaker. The requirement is that you should be voted for and my people have voted for me, but I believe people underrate the position of Deputy Speaker; but the Deputy is not a spare tyre. If you look at the president and vice-president you will see that deputies are not spare.
“As a deputy I can be a source of communication with other arms of government and I believe I have the capacity to carry my people along. I am going to be a just leader because what brings quarrel is injustice,” he said.