House of Reps Speaker: Wase formally declares intention to run

DEPUTY Speaker of the House of Representatives Idris Wase has officially declared his intention to contest the speakership position of the 10th Assembly.

Stating his intention on Friday, May 12, Wase said, “Respected colleagues, I appreciate every one of you present, and by the grace of God, if you give me your mandate, we shall do you proud. We shall create a vibrant legislature that will stand the test of time among nations of nations.”

The deputy speaker stated that it was his turn to occupy the position and added that he had made sacrifices for the National Assembly by giving up his previous leadership ambitions.

Wase, a member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has been in the House of Representatives since 2007 and won his re-election bid in February 2023 for the fifth time.

Although Wase is regarded as one of the leading contestants, the APC National Working Committee had zoned the National Assembly leadership positions to the South-South and North-West in favour of Godswill Akpabio and Tajudeen Abbas as senate president and House of Representatives speaker respectively.

The zoning formula has, however, generated criticisms from many party members, including Wase, who hails from North-Central Nigeria.

Some dissenting party members described the zoning as a marginalisation of the region. Others said there were no thorough discussions and consultations with party members before the decision was reached.

The APC national chairman Abdullahi Adamu, however, promised the aggrieved lawmakers that the zoning formula would be revisited and resolved before the 10th Assembly is inaugurated in June.



    “As chairman of APC and members of the NWC, we take responsibility for what has gone out. We will go back to the drawing board. We owe our party that duty to take a look whether what was done can be changed; what was done needs some changes or reviews. We will take a look at it again.

    “Hold the fire until the last word is heard from us. We are the custodians of the party as NWC but we are not acting alone,” Adamu said.

    Several lawmakers had also indicated interest in the position, including embattled majority leader Alhassan Ado-Doguwa; chairman, House Committee on Appropriations, Aliyu Betara; and chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Benjamin Kalu.

    In April, a female lawmaker representing the Isiala-Mbano/Onuimo/Okigwe constituency of Imo State, Miriam Onuoha, joined the race for the position of speaker, stating that the declining number of women in the National Assembly was a call to action.

    Ijeoma Opara is a journalist with The ICIR. Reach her via [email protected] or @ije_le on Twitter.

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