Lawmakers Approve Fresh N30bn for National Assembly Renovation

10th NASS: Five Aggrieved Aspirants Gang Up Against APC’s Consensus Candidates

by Victor Ndubuisi

The debate over the ruling All Progressives Congress’ (APC) zoning plans for the 10th National Assembly’s top positions has intensified.

According to news sources, Tajudeen Abbas, the consensus choice of the party and a representative from the nation’s north-western region, has been attacked by five resentful candidates for the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Recall that the APC’s National Working Committee (NWC) announced its zoning plan on Monday following extensive consultation with Rep members.

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The position of Senate President was zoned to the South-South, and the unanimous choice for the job was Senator Godwin Akpabio, Minister of Niger Delta Affairs. His running mate is Senator Barau Jibrin, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, from the North-West.


Tajudeen Abbas of the North West was proposed to fill the position of Speaker of the House, and Benjamin Kalu of the South East won the nomination for the position of Deputy Speaker.

Some candidates for the major positions, however, do not agree with the party’s choice.

This platform reported on Tuesday that Aliyu Betara (APC/Borno), the current chair of the House Appropriations Committee, disregarded the zoning arrangement and formally announced his intention to compete for speaker.

The group of the five disgruntled aspirants reportedly came together at Betara’s declaration, which took place on Monday night at the Transcorp Hotel in Abuja.

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Alhassan Ado Doguwa, the majority leader, Sada Soli, the chair of the house committee on water resources, Betara, a former member of the house who is now a member-elect, and Sani Jaji are all members of the group, according to deputy speaker Ahmed Wase.

However, it was discovered that Yusuf Gagdi, another front-runner in the speakership contest, was present. Later, a picture of the five candidates with Gagdi surfaced online.


From Plateau State in the north central region, Wase and Gagdi are from; Betara is from Borno State in the north east; Soli is from Katsina State in the north west; and Jaji is from Zamfara State in the same region.

Wase at the event said ‘’We are here for the very reasons enumerated by Sada (Soli), to ensure the independence of the parliament, to ensure that we work as a family. What we are witnessing today, we have never seen that kind of moment in the parliament and that is why every parliamentarian must rise to the occasion; to defend that institution, to ensure we do the right thing.”

10th NASS Leadership: Crisis Intensify Over Senate President, Speaker Positions


The Deputy Speaker noted that the G-4 had become G-5, with the “additional one finger that we had, that is Hon Ado Doguwa.”

Wase said, “We will work as a team. We will not allow this parliament to be disgraced. We will not allow this parliament to be hijacked. We will not allow this parliament to be made a lame duck. I believe we are loyal to our country first, loyal to our party, loyal to our people.

“Like my Leader (Doguwa) did mention when you say you have a consensus candidate, the language for consensus is very simple; it means that you have had a massive consultation, people were brought to the table for discussion and there is an agreement. But in this case, we just saw and we are hearing rumours, speculations that some people have been made consensus candidates. I don’t know whether that is the meaning of consensus.


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“I am a democrat. I came into the parliament in 2007 and by the grace of God I am into my fifth term, and I give glory to God. This place is very sacred. It is honourable and that is why we are called honourable members. We must be honourable in our dealings, actions, and activities in defence of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. We have agreed that we will all work together, the five of us.”


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