178 Reps-elect endorse Gbajabiamila for Speaker
Leke Baiyewu, Abuja
The candidate of the All Progressives Congress and Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila, on Thursday held a marathon meeting with newly elected members behind closed doors.
Gbajabiamila, in the middle of the meeting, led the members-elect to address journalists, where the outgoing Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Mr. Onofiok Luke, who spoke on their behalf, said the incoming representatives had endorsed the Majority Leader for Speaker in the 9th National Assembly.
The members-elect were said to be 178, drawn from various political parties.
Luke said, “I am the Speaker of Akwa Ibom State and here with me are newly-elected members of the House of Representatives, and this is a conglomeration of people of different parties.
According to the Pioneer Speaker of the Nigerian Youth Parliament,“I am of the PDP. We have members of the APC here. We have members of APGA, we have people from AA, we have people from ACP and we have people from ADC. It’s a multi-party arrangement.
“We decided to convene ourselves as newly-elected members of the House of Representatives to look at the emergence of the next leadership of the 9th Assembly and in doing so, we looked through the antecedents and credentials of those who are aspiring to lead the National Assembly.
“We acknowledge the fact that this country today, with the challenges that we have, that we need a bipartisan approach to solve the problem of Nigeria.
“And the person and the man that has shown that credibility, capacity; that has what it takes even as reflected in his manifesto, to carry the entire parties along in resolving and solving the issues of Nigeria; the man who will not mortgage the independence of the legislature but at the same time would not engage the executive in unnecessary fisticuffs; a man who will build a good relationship between the executive and the legislature, between the legislature and the judiciary; a man who will care about the welfare of Nigerians; a man who will put the interest of Nigeria above his personal interest; and a man who will put the interest of Nigeria above the party.
“We have resolved today, to have come from our different states, from our different constituencies, and we have found as newly-elected members, having looked through the credentials and the CV; we have found Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila as a man who has the capacity to lead the 9th National Assembly as the Speaker of the House of Representatives.
“We know that he is not going to let Nigerians down and we know and believe that he is not going to let us down and we know and believe that he is not going to let God down.”
Soon after the address, the members-elect returned to their closed-door meeting at about 6pm.
Some of those in attendance were seen each with a pack of Tecno F1 phone, which some of them gave to their orderlies and aides to hold.
An aide to one of them, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said it was a souvenir shared at the meeting.