…as Reps patiently wait for APC zoning formula
The House of Representatives race for speakership has taken a new dimension as the North West geo-political zone shows keen interest on who becomes the next number four citizen in Nigeria.
In this analysis, TheNewsGuru.com, (TNG) will take a look at the various zones and their candidates gunning for Femi Gbajabiamila’s job.
It’s simply the rule of first among equals in the parliament as lawmakers jostle, lobby colleagues on who picks the coveted job in the most vibrant Green Chamber in Africa.
In the pack so far are the outgoing deputy speaker, Idris Wase from the North Central geo-political zone, Benjamin Kalu from the South East and Tajudeen Abass from the North West, others are non-starters scavenging for ‘juicy’ committees.
Wase started the race before others as he has sign posted his billboards in all available corners of the National Assembly.
The entire north central in the last February presidential election did not really give APC strong support as even the home state of Wase fell flat to the opposition.
Hon Aliyu Betara is from the North East geo-political zone, the zone of the Vice President-elect, Kashim Shetima and same state of Borno. Number two and three coming from same state is a technical knock out.
This has put a spanner in the ambition of Betara who is the current Chairman of Reps Committee on Appropriation.
Betara is popular among his colleagues but his zone is now an albatross as the argument is that his state cannot produce both VP and Speaker.
Hon Benjamin Kalu is from the South East geo-political zone. His entire zone produced less than 173,000 votes into the presidential election tray for APC.
Give and take if his zone had performed in terms of delivering votes for the ruling party, his speakership could have at least fetched something for him in the body of principal officers.
In all these the North West is saying we gave the highest number of votes to the president, we can’t be onlookers in this game, we deserve something for all our efforts. Taking the speakership position will not be a bad idea.
Weighing all the available options, the North West went to the parliamentary market and got a candidate without any baggage or hangover of a blemished past.
They saw these qualities in Hon Tajudeen Abass, a P.hd holder, former lecturer, fourth timer in the House of Representatives, the man with the highest number of assented bills in the outgoing ninth Assembly.
An overwhelming record in the seventh, eighth and ninth assemblies showcasing rare intelligence and brilliance in legislative business as he recorded a high number of bills in the past three assemblies.
With the entry of Abass into the race, the political calculations of those eyeing Gbajabiamila’s job nose dived into an abyss of confusion.
Abass apart from being eminently qualified has a track record of performance as a silent worker treading cautiously without making noise.
His records are there for all to see and his zone has evidence to show to the entire world that they immensely contributed to the reemergence of the APC in 2023.
Those in other camps need to borrow stronger legs to remain in the race or as usual bury their ambition for good.
WAITING FOR APC ZONING FORMULA:
The silence of APC on where the pendulum will swing to in the National Assembly has left lawmakers to have sleepless nights.
Nobody seems to understand the body language of the party in this direction and this is a dangerous signal that may further lead the House into a ‘Dugbe’ arrangement like in 2019. But at the end of the day political IOUs and realignments weeded all to just two contestants.
The over 13 contestants finally found their levels. APC silence for now on zoning formula is hyper dangerous.