10th National Assembly Leadership: Civil Society Call Out Ahmad Lawan.
As the race for the leadership of the 10th National Assembly continues to breed interests across parties, geopolitical zones and ethnicities,with visible evidence of religious factors in choosing the next President of the Nigeria Senate, Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Coalition of Civil Society For Democracy* has taken different views on most factors that usually shape the emergence of the leadership of the National Assembly.
About 42 leaders of the Civil Society Groups at a Press briefing in Abuja on Saturday centred on The 10th Assembly Leadership and Nigeria Interest Over Other Interests.
The Coalition of Civil Society For Democracy, speaking through the Convener Comrade Richard Leke, said “the direction where the pendulum of a society swings is a function of the quality of leadership in place. We have decided to digress a little into the common factors that will determine what happens to us all as citizens of Nigeria and our readiness to practice true democracy as best global practice.
“Certain factors should no longer be yardsticks or parameters to become the Senate president or Speaker of the House. We have so much idolised party supremacy, religion and ethnicity which have not produced desirable results in our political journey.”
Comrade Leke went further to say “we must henceforth emphasize competence,merit,and experience in choosing the leadership of the National Assembly above geopolitical zones and other glorified factors practiced by politicians which have impeded our democratic growth and undermine productive legislation”
The group further expressed readiness and contiguous agitation for competence, experience and merit as against zoning and party anointing in choosing the leadership of the 10th National Assembly.
The Legislative job is quite different from that of the executive and as such,must be given different approach.
For example, Senator Ahmad Lawan who is the current President of the Senate is still the best option for the seat in the coming 10th Assembly, his geopolitical zone and his religion should not be factors that should disqualify him. This is an experienced legislator who understands the rudiments of legislation, diplomatic and productive engagement with the executive that have led the 9th Assembly in passing most crucial Bills such as the independent of State Houses of Assembly and Judiciary as well as the new electoral acts which have helped reshaping our electioneering process, and address certain ambiguity in electoral litigation and has led the most peaceful Senate in recent past” The group strongly expressed.
We have heard the President-Elect severally, emphasising competence and merit over every other factors in governance and we also hold same believe that, that is the only way we can move forward as a nation.
Moreso, the legislative Job requires strong experience as seen in other climes we claim to learn democratic norms. Only a very few experienced Senators are returning to the 10th Assembly and if we must tell ourselves the truth,we cannot afford to downplay the importance of experience in legislative leadership and as such, Senator Ahmad Lawan should be considered for the crucial legislation of the next dispensation.
Above all,we must take into consideration that the social perception of the personality occupying the seats of President of the Senate and Speaker,will certainly form the true reflection of characters of the entire 10th Assembly members.
We conclude by urging Senator Ahmad Lawan to consider running for the President of the Senate and to let the leadership of APC and other incoming legislators to note that, neither geopolitical zones nor religious factors should disqualify anyone from running for an office in democratic society as the the current Vice president and Speaker of the House of Representatives are also from same zone” Comrade Leke emphasised.