The Progressives Foundational Movement (PFM), a group in the All Progressives Congress (APC), has thrown its weight behind the speakership bid of Tajudeen Abass, a lawmaker from Kaduna state.
Abbas and Benjamin Kalu, of the House of Representatives, were nominated by the ruling party for speaker and deputy speaker roles.
The decision has been criticised and opposed by many of the party’s members — especially those interested in the positions.
In a statement on Sunday, Aganaba Johnson, the group’s coordinator, said if other defunct parties that make up the APC have been able produce various leaders, the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) – a party founded by President Muhammadu Buhari – should not be left out.
Johnson said Abbas, former member of the defunct CPC, should be supported for the speakership role.
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“It will amount to injustice against the defunct CPC members in the APC if other defunct parties like Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) that produced the President-elect, the defunct All Nigerians Peoples Party (ANPP) produced Vice President-elect and the New Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP) is allowed to Produce the Senate President, then Hon. Tajudeen Abbas should be given the opportunity to represent the defunct CPC as speaker, house of representatives,” he said.
“In the history of the Nigerian house of representatives, Hon. Abbas has the highest bills of 78 in the 9th assembly, he has the 3rd highest bills of 43 in the 8th Assembly and 20 of these bills have been assented to.
“The country must endeavour to sustain the successes recorded in the outgoing 9th assembly whereby there are tangible achievements due to the cordial relationship between the executive and legislative arms.
“We don’t want the situation capable of igniting confusion and turbulence in the parliament, which may ultimately affect the cordial environment that the legislature needs to function.
“It is axiomatic that we are in a democracy and people are free to ventilate and express themselves but we must exercise this right with some measure of caution and responsibility so as not to heat up the system.”
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