As the race to who occupies Presiding Offices in the next 10th National Assembly hots up, President Bola Tinubu has has been warned against playing into the hands of undemocratic external forces at play,leadership report.

Kano South Senator-elect on the platform of New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Abdulrahman Suleiman Kawu Sumaila, while briefing members of the Senate Press Corps (SPC) on Monday at the National Assembly complex, said the election of presiding officers in both chambers of the National Assembly is business of 109 Senators-elect and 360 Members-elect in the House of Representatives, wondering why there should be external interference against international best practice.

“It is, therefore, clear that, the election of these Presiding Officers is purely an internal affair that concerns only members of the National Assembly and, therefore, they should be allowed to decide who among them would occupy the positions in order to avoid repetition of the past mistakes – we may all recall the incidences of the 7th and 8th National Assembly.

“In my view, external interference in the election of the next Presiding Officers of the National Assembly would not only violate the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution and Standing Orders of both the Senate and House of Representatives, but would also cause a serious misunderstandings between the Legislative and Executive Arms of government.

“Available information reveals that some desperate politicians are planning to use undemocratic means to impose Lawmakers-elect of their choice to become Presiding Officers against the wishes of the majority. This move is undemocratic, unacceptable and dangerous to our democracy as well as the nation as a whole,” Sumaila stated.

The Kano South Senator-elect and former presidential aide on National Assembly Matters, however, boasted that Zamfara West Senator-elect, Abdul’aziz Abubakar Yari, will emerge the next Senate President.

Also, at a different world press conference in Abuja on Monday, a civil society organisation, Coalition of Good Governance Network (C2G-Network) raised the alarm over actions that may scuttle the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly slated for June 13, 2023.

The CSO, therefore, urged President Tinubu not to dance to the tunes of desperate politicians and lawmakers-elect, who may want their opponents to be harrassed or intimidated out of the race to the 10th National Assembly presiding offices for their own undue advantage.

They urged Tinubu to issue the Proclamation Letter for the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly at the right time in order to avoid unnecessary delay for selfish political motive.

The convener, C2G-Network, Comrade Remi Adebayo, flanked by other members of the group, said: “We are confident that having himself emerged through a process enabled by the wishes and desires of majority of Nigerians, who freely exercised their franchise through the ballot, President Tinubu should not toy with despotic tendencies that will foist leaders on the Legislative Arm of government against the spirit and letter of principle of separations of powers as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

“The President must resist antics and desperation from interested parties or so-called annointed candidates to subsequently heat up the polity by dancing to the tunes of people who want their opponents arrested, harrassed or prevented from accessing the hallowed chambers of the National Assembly on Tuesday, June 13,

“The C2G-Network strongly align with lawful and democratic processes for the next Presiding Officers of the National Assembly to be elected, without resorting to intimidation or harassment of those seeking leadership positions or their supporters based on their democratic alignments or choices.

“This will better define our Nation’s robust legislative virtues, when eligible lawmakers are allowed to exercise their rights as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and Standing Rules of both chambers.

“President Tinubu with his rich democratic record evident through his fight against military dictatorships and totalitarian leadership in the past, is expected to draw from the wealth of these virtues to guarantee that the 10th National Assembly is inaugurated amid peaceful, rancour-free, lawful atmosphere that does no harm to our democracy or diminish the President’s democratic stature in the eye of the public.”


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