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House Navy Committee Chair, Gagdi Joins Speakership Race

House Navy Committee Chair, Gagdi Joins Speakership Race

•Group drums support for Akinremi as deputy speaker

Udora Orizu in Abuja

Although the All Progressives Congress (APC) is yet to formally announce the zoning of the speakership position and other presiding and principal offices for the incoming 10th House of Representatives, more lawmakers have indicated interest to take over Femi Gbajabiamila’s seat in the Green Chamber of the National Assembly.

THISDAY had last week reported that ranking members of the House were already jostling for the House speakership.

The lawmakers included Hon. Aliyu Betara representing Biu/Kwaya federal constituency of Borno State; Aminu Sani Jaji, a former chairman of the House of Representatives committee on National Security and intelligence  in the 8th Assembly who has been reelected to represent Kaura Namoda/Birnin Magaji federal constituency of Zamfara state; the current deputy speaker, Hon. Idris Wase from Plateau State; the current spokesman of the House, Hon. Ben Kalu and the majority leader of the 9th House, Hon. Ado Doguwa.

But, the Chairman, House Committee on Navy, Hon. Yusuf Gagdi has also joined the race to replace Gbajabiamila.

Gagdi, the latest entrant into the race is the member representing Pankshin/Kanke/Kanam Federal Constituency of Plateau State in north central geopolitical zone of Nigeria.

He was a deputy speaker of the State House of Assembly before getting elected into the House in 2019. Upon his debut into the national parliament, Gagdi quickly got involved in the internal politics at the time, aligned with the “progressives” camp and eventually became the chairman of Navy committee, a committee ordinarily would not be given to a first timer.

THISDAY learnt that Gagdi is one of those presently clamouring hard to see that the speakership slot would be zoned to the north central to enable him formally declare his interest when the House resumes for plenary session next week Tuesday.

Born on November 5, 1980, the 42 year lawmaker had served in various other capacities before his present position which included Legislative Aide to Deputy Speaker of Plateau State House of Assembly between 2003 and 2006; member of Plateau State Library Board 2012- 2014 and Chairman of Federal Board, Lower Benue River Basin Development Authority (LBRBDA Makurdi 2012 – 2014; Chairman of Special Committee on peace, security and reconciliation Plateau State 2015; Chairman Special Committee on Peace, Security and Reconciliation Plateau State 2018 and as well as Financial Secretary of PDP Plateau State 2012 – 2014.

In a related development, a group, under the aegis of Movement for Democratic Consolidation (southwest chapter) has canvassed support for the candidature of Hon. Prince Olaide Akinremi, member representing, Ibadan North Federal constituency as the Deputy Speaker in the 10th House of Representatives.

The group in a statement signed by its National Coordinator, Olaleye Olusegun and southwest coordinator, Aridunnu-Omo, after its emergency national conference held in Ibadan, Oyo State stated that Akinremi remained among the most qualified for the position of the Deputy Speaker, saying any support for Akinremi would further equate the agitation by the six geo-political zone in electing principal officers of the party in the 10th National Assembly.

Olusegun said: “I will also give assurance that only members-elect with track records and competency are saddled with responsibility of piloting affairs of National Assembly for the next four years.

“The president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, his Vice-president-elect, Sen. Kassim Shettima and the APC, National Working Committee members have shown more commitment about who become principal officers and will not disappoint Nigerians who trusted, APC with majority votes in the Presidential and National Assembly elections.

“The best man that could co-pilot the affairs of the House of Representatives to a new and glorious beginning is Hon. Akinremi. He is a loyal, tested and a responsible party man and that he had the credentials to energide APC in the parliament which will be free from rancor with the executive arm of government and take as priority legislation that will move the nation towards a path of development.

“Although these positions have not been zoned to a particular region of the country, it is only right and fair that the South-West produce the Deputy Speaker. Our party, the APC had continued to wax stronger, and we are not relenting.”

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