Nigerian PoliticsOpinion

In Search of a good speaker for the NASS-Avatars for Peace X-rays aspirants


In Search of a good speaker for the NASS-Avatars for Peace X-rays aspirants

Share this article

Barr. Swuthirba Joel

The highly Anticipated 2023 National and State Elections have come and gone, leaving Nigerians and Nigeria with lots of political lessons to be learned and corrections to be made where mistakes have occurred. Now with all the Supplementary Elections concluded and all Elected personnel both at the Executives and Legislative Arm of Government being given their certificates of returns from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the die is
now cast for the present Government to be putting its House to Handover the Batton to the Newly Elected set of Officials/Representatives come May 29th, 2023, and June 13th, 2023 for Executives and Legislators as the case might be.

In the National Assembly which is the Legislative Arm of Government the life span of the 9th Assembly under the watchful eyes of Sen Ahmed Lawal and Rt Hon Femi Gbajabiamila, it is also just a matter of days for they to step from handling the Gavel and putting the Question to the remaining colleagues on who determines a motion based on those with the majority of “Yeas or minorities of Nays”. As usually used in the public parlance “Soldier come, Soldier go,
barracks remain the same”.

The 10th National Assembly is soon going to take over from the 9th Assembly with the Arrays of Elected Representatives already Elected, having some members return while some lost to new members coming into the assembly. June 13th, 2023 is the sacrosanct date, and the Quest
for Leadership of both Houses has begun in earnest since the return of the Elected honorable members and Distinguish Senators, which has made the polity heated up as to who shall lead the Senate and House of Representatives.

Avatars for Peace and Social Justice Initiative, under the leadership of Barr. Swuthirba Joel, a Pro-Democracy outfit, has lent its voice to the politics of the 10th Assembly most particularly the House of Representatives to ex-ray the Selection/Election of the
Speaker of the Green Chambers.

As the politics, campaign, and lobbying for who leads the House of Representatives intensities,
Nigerians are carefully watching and observing the politics of the National Assembly with the eye of the Eagle, as it is believed it is the responsibility and internal squabble of the elected
representatives to Choose/Elect who leads them in their Legislative Activities, Duties, and Functions as a House.
As a group/citizens, we feel concerned over the choice of who leads the 10th National Assembly and most particularly the House of Representatives (The Masses Chambers) hence our Advocacy
for a right choice of a leader, irrespective of political Affiliation for the General Interest of Nigerians. We believe that the Speaker occupies a sensitive position in the Hierarchy of Leadership in the Country(As the 4th citizen of Political Protocol, the President is number one,
Vice president number two, and the Senate President Number three) therefore the Speaker of the House of Representative does not just lead the Green Chambers but stands as a general figure who represent, work, and is answerable to the general public. As a result, a meticulous and proper choice of such a leader is of imminent importance.

The Avatars for Peace and Social Justice Initiative thinks that the National Assembly as an Independent Arm of Government is saddled with enormous Responsibilities amongst
which is to checkmate the activities of other Arms of Government and also the formulation of laws for the country. It, therefore needs Responsive Leadership that is Progressive, Articulated in leading the House for effective, Robust legislation to add more value to the strides and achievements of the 9th National Assembly.

In the Race for the seat of the Speaker Intensities, the group has taken note of ten(10) Aspirants who have presented themselves to both their colleagues and the general public to X-ray them wholistically before entrusting them with the Mantle of leadership, these persons Include: Hon Idris Wase (Deputy Speaker) Hon Muktar Aliyu Betara (Chairman House Committee Appropriation) Hon Yusuf Gaddi (Chairman Committee on Navy) Hon Tajudeen Abbas (Chairman Committee on Land Transport) Hon Abdulraheem Olawuyi (Chairman Committee on Disaster preparedness) Hon Sada Soli (Chairman Committee on Water Resources) Hon Makki Yalleman and Hon Sani Jaji, Hon Isa Doguwa (Majority Leader of the
House) It is therefore worthy of mention that the moment a member put himself out to be a leader, he has agreed to be Subjected to standard checks/opinions of public figures and the veil of privacy Removed, starting from his / her character traits and other vital personality checks. As an Honorable member presenting a particular constituency (part of the country) he/ she is scrutinized by his immediate constituency whom he seeks to Represent, upon Inauguration
into the Green Chambers as a Federal Legislator he/she is translated into a National Figure as a Federal Legislator making him Answerable to the Nation. Hence his actions, activities in the
House is now viewed in the public domain and not just his / her Immediate constituency.

Based on this Analysis, it is our submission whoever Aspires to lead such a house of Honorable personalities must first subject himself to rather more meticulous and sensitive scrutiny as he is now the face of 360 Honourable members and the face of over 200,000,000 Nigerians.

Avatars for Peace and Social Justice Initiative, and Nigerians, in General wish to draw the attention of the Honourable Members to be very cautious in the Election of the person who leads the Green Chambers for posterity, hence Member should eschew caution to Elect a Leader with credible qualities of leadership such as Competence, Experience, Integrity, Character, Exposure, Analytic, Intelligent, Tolerant and Humane among other
desirable qualities over and above party loyalty/sentiments, zoning formula, or any unconstitutional criteria that do not reflect the wishes and Aspirations of Nigerians and international best standards of choosing a Leader.
It is our call that the Country’s Democracy is maturing with age and it needs to be reflected in the Actions/Dictates of the Active players of Democracy i.e. the political class and elected Representatives. The group, therefore suggests that the Independence of each Arm of Government should be respected without much interference, only the rightful and Legal order of lobbying as the Best and Acceptable standard of Assuaging support for a popular candidate be adopted. At the same time Aspirants seeking Leadership positions in the Senate or House of Representatives
should exercise the highest standard of decorum and maturity in seeking votes from colleagues.

All means of lobbying be very transparent and orderly without necessarily overheating the polity, this we believe will add value to the National Assembly and Not Disintegrate or divide
the Assembly over the personal Ambitions of Aspirants as Said in popular parlance “it is not a do or die affair” but rather a political process of Electing a leader, First Amongst Equals.

Therefore, we want to see a 10th National Assembly that will be independent and mature in Electing her Leadership without rancor to the admiration of Nigerians and the international community and the emergence of a leader that will be acceptable by the majority of Honourable
Members and respected by Nigerians as the Speaker of the 10th National Assembly. Only time will tell, the chase continues.

Barr. Swuthirba Joel