Wase dares APC, vows to contest speakership

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On Friday in Abuja, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ahmed Wase, promised not to resign from the contest for the Office of Speaker of the 10th National Assembly.

This is notwithstanding the decision of the governing party, the All Progressives Congress, which assigned the post to the North-East.

“I am in the race! And with the grace of God, I am going to conclude the race. I have not withdrawn or stood down for anybody,” Wase told State House Correspondents on Friday after meeting the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) at the Aso Rock Villa, Abuja.

On Wednesday, the outgoing Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, said the Joint Task for the 10th Assembly, a coalition of members-elect of the APC and opposition parties, had adopted the anointed candidates of the APC for Speaker and Deputy Speaker, Tajudeen Abbas and Benjamin Kalu, respectively, for the 10th House.

He said the APC offered the North-West the Speakership and Deputy Senate Presidency to compensate the zone.
However, Wase maintained that the APC National Working Committee letter, which characterized the zoning as advisory, also allows for future debate on the topic.

He stated that the advising nature of the letter breaches the 1999 Constitution, Section 14(4) as modified, which specifies that the makeup of the government, including its agencies, should reflect a federal character.

The outgoing deputy speaker stated that neglecting the deputy speakership for his zone not only flouts the federal character but also overlooks the massive support and votes his region contributed to the APC in the past elections.

He said, “I am not just speaking for myself. You can’t bring a deputy senate president, but you can give us the deputy speaker post. You cannot overlook us, even though we have delivered one of the best outcomes in terms of voting and support for the government.”

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