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North Central seeks speakership, APC alleges plot to hijack ninth National Assembly

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The North Central Caucus in the House of Representatives has risen from an emergency meeting in Abuja, insisting on producing the next speaker of the lower legislative chamber.John Dyegh, who briefed reporters on behalf of the caucus yesterday in Abuja, stated that it behooves the leadership of the ruling All Progressives congress (APC) to zone the seat to the area in the interest of justice, equity and fairness.

The caucus said the agitation was well placed against the background that the North West and South West geo political zones already had the positions of president and vice president.The lawmakers noted that besides North West and North East, the zone delivered handsomely for the party in this year’s general elections and should be rewarded for its loyalty.

They stressed the need to ensure balance and spread among the six geo-political regions.The caucus noted: “Being the zone with delicate and peculiar location and challenges within the federation, it is of utmost importance to carry us along in the hierarchy of power distribution in the country, as this will in no small measure, help in stabilising the polity.“It is not by coincidence that the Nigerian constitution enshrined federal character in the distribution of offices and leadership positions in the country. Section 14(4) of the law book speaks eloquently to this fact.”

Meanwhile, the ruling party has alleged move by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to pick the leadership of the ninth National Assembly.APC’s Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Yekini Nabena, claimed that the plot fits into what he called “Otta farm” strategy to allow loyalists of Senate President Bukola Saraki take control of the next legislature.He urged President Muhammadu Buhari and the Adams Oshiomhole-led National Working Committee of the party to swiftly come out with the zoning of offices to avoid a repeat of the 2015 scenario.

The spokesman, who addressed reporters yesterday in Abuja claimed: “The outgoing senate president and the PDP caucus have begun surreptitious move to lure some new APC lawmakers with juicy committee positions in return for their support for the PDP’s choice for the leadership of the Senate and House of Representatives.

“Already, Saraki’s henchman, Dino Melaye, and some other returning PDP federal lawmakers have scheduled meetings with some APC legislators from Wednesday (today) to Sunday in a yet-to-be announced venue.”He added: “It is important that the APC leadership meets and urgently rolls out a fair zoning arrangement to ensure that we produce our preferred candidates for all leadership positions in the incoming National Assembly.

“Since Saraki lost his bid to return to the Senate and control of his home state of Kwara, he has devised a plan to ensure that he influences the choice of the incoming National Assembly leadership. This is his last-ditch effort to remain politically relevant.”


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