Speakership tussle: Chinda, Wike’s ally, leads ‘283 coalition reps’ to work for APC


A coalition of elected members for the 10th house of
representatives says they will respect the zoning decision of the All Progressives
Congress (APC) on the speakership position and other principal offices.


In a statement released on Thursday, Usman Kumo, a member of
the All Progressives Congress from Gombe; and Kingsley Chinda, a Peoples
Democratic Party from Rivers, said the coalition is “committed to presenting a
united front that will help the incoming administration of Bola Tinubu”.


Chinda — who is the co-chairperson of the coalition — is an
associate of Nyesom Wike, governor of Rivers state.


Early this month, Wike said the PDP in the state would
support any candidate presented by the leadership of the APC for the position
of speaker.


He made the promise when Idris Wase, deputy speaker of the
house of representatives, led a delegation of lawmakers to visit him at the
government house in Port Harcourt.


“The truth must be told that we are going to support the
leadership of your party at the national level,” Wike told Wase.


Chinda and Kumo said the coalition christened “joint task –
10th assembly” — comprises 283 members-elect from the APC, PDP, Labour Party
(LP), New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Social Democratic Party (SDP), All
Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), African Democratic Congress (ADC) and Young
Progressive Party (YPP).


The lawmakers said the focus of the coalition is to promote
equity and fairness among members-elect in the emergence of presiding and
principal officers.


Chinda and Kumo said 14 APC governors, nine PDP governors,
and “several” national working committee (NWC) members of the ruling and
opposition political parties have endorsed the coalition.


“Already, 283 members-elect comprising both returning and
new members have endorsed the coalition (and we now) await the decision of the
ruling APC on the zoning of the various offices,” the statement reads.


“The forum is independent of the speakership ambition of any
of the various aspirants but with determination to build a strong coalition of
members-elect of the 10th house in readiness to support the majority party
zoning of the speakership office towards building a rancour-free and
people-oriented 10th Assembly and in line with best parliamentary practice.”




The coalition said those who may want to defy the APC and
have a “repeat of the 2015 rebellion” should remember the consequences of such
action on governance “as the sour relationship between the leadership of the
8th national assembly and the executive left Nigeria and Nigerians at the
receiving end”.


“Rebellion will deny the incoming Tinubu administration the
opportunity to deliver on its mandate and the high expectations from Nigerians,
especially under the current ethnic and religious tension in the country,” the
lawmakers said.


“We are glad that the leadership of the ruling party
recognises that the opposition political parties in the house are very key in
the formation of the next leader of the house, hence this coalition shall
continue to consult with all the opposition parties.


 “We desire to see a
Nigeria where all of us, the political actors, come together to put the country
first, subduing our interest, to have a better country that we, our children,
and our children’s children will be proud of.”


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