© 2019 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Confusion in Bauchi Assembly as two speakers claim seat
TWO different persons, Abubakar Suleiman of the All Progressives Congress(APC) and Kawuwa Damina (also APC) have emerged as the new speakers of the Bauch State House of Assembly.
The situation has caused an ongoing ruckus in the state legislative arm as members elected two speakers in separate elections.
Earlier on Thursday morning around 7:00 am (GMT+1), Suleiman who is a member representing Ningi Central Constituency was picked as the speaker by a caucus of 11 out of 31 members of the assembly. He was nominated by Babayo Muhammad, member representing Hardawa constituency, while Jamilu Umar Dahiru, who is representing Bauchi central constituency, seconded the nomination.
The eleven lawmakers mostly consist of the Peoples Democratic Party also declared Danlami Kawule who is representing Zungur/Galambi and member of the PDP as the Deputy Speaker.
But, after some hours, another 18 members of the house declared Damina the speaker after a parallel election was held in front of the Assembly complex. The election was done outside as it had been locked. However, the 18 members stood in front of the statue of the Mace symbol and elected Kawuwa Damina who is also the ex-speaker of the house. Tukur Ibrahim was appointed the deputy speaker.
An earlier report on Wednesday noted that the APC group in the legislative arm of the state was in crisis as the APC was insisting on Damina’s re-election, Suleiman also insisted on contesting. The latter was largely supported by the PDP.
For a state house of assembly, it is expected that two-thirds of the members should be present to conduct the business of the house. Thus, a 31-member assembly will have a minimum of 21 members present before any deliberations could be made.
In Bauchi, though governor Bala Mohammed is a member of the PDP, APC has the majority at the legislative floor with 22 members, PDP’s eight and New Nigeria People’s Party has one.