Tajudeen Abbas and Benjamin Kalu nominated by the All Progressives Congress as Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively have gotten the endorsement of sixty-three incoming members of Nigeria’s 10th House of Representatives.
The Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) spokesperson, Ikenga Ugochinyere, who is also a newly elected representative, relayed this endorsement during a press conference in Abuja.
He encouraged other speaker aspirants depending on opposition votes to withdraw from the contest, as their votes were now committed to Abbas and Kalu.
Ugochinyere asserted, “Our common goal now should be beyond party and partisan politics and totally focused on Nigeria and her greater good. We want the best and we have selected the best and importantly, the selection is by merit.”
Speaking on behalf of the 63 members-elect, he further revealed their transformation into the TBK Group, with all 63 votes firmly committed to Abbas, “In the coming days, Nigerians will come to know the identity of the TBK Group and will also feel our impact.”
He vouched for Abbas’ aptitude for the Speaker position, praising his education, experience, resourcefulness, and integrity, and noted that Abbas had proposed 43 bills in the 8th Assembly and 74 in the 9th, making him the legislator with the highest number of bills.
“21 of those bills have been signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari,” Ugochinyere added.
Labour Party member-elect Amobi Ogah also voiced his support for Abbas and Kalu, describing them as capable and competent.
He expressed hope for the 10th Assembly’s uniqueness if both were elected.
Igah urged, “I beg my colleagues to support the duo in the interest of National unity.”
This announcement came in the run-up to the 10th National Assembly’s inauguration on June 13, where new Senate and House officers will be elected or confirmed.
It also follows the APC’s release of the leadership zoning formula for the 10th National Assembly, which saw some dissatisfied speaker aspirants form a group.
In conclusion, the backing from the Minority Parties Forum and the Joint Task – 10th Assembly coalition has consolidated support for the APC nominees.
The upcoming inauguration will reveal if these alliances have indeed succeeded in creating a united front behind Abbas and Kalu.