NASS Leadership: Tinubu settles for Akpabio, Abass as preferred choices
The President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has settled for Messrs Godswill Akpabio and Tajudeen Abass as his preferred choices to occupy the seats of the Senate President and Speaker House of Representatives respectively, sources said.
The Guardian gathered that the decision was reached yesterday during the parley of the President-elect, selected members of the Senator Abdullahi Adamu-led National Working Committee (NWC) at the Defence House, Abuja.
In attendance at the parley which lasted for over an hour were the outgoing Senate President Ahmad Lawan, his deputy, Ovie Omo-Agege and the outgoing, Speaker of the House, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila.
Among those at the parley were the APC Secretary, Sen. Iyiola Omisore; the Deputy National Chairman, North, Sen. Abubakar Kyari and his counterpart from the South, Chief Emma Eneukwu.
A member of the NWC who pleaded anonymity confirmed the development to The Guardian, saying, “The Tinubu had made up his mind on the issue long ago except if he changes his mind before the inauguration of the National Assembly next month.
“It is true he has endorsed them for the leadership of the National Assembly after meeting with representatives of the NWC and other stakeholders of the party.”
When contacted, APC National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Felix Morka, who promised to get back to The Guardian on the issue neither confirmed or deny the endorsement of Abass representing Zaria Federal Constituency of Kaduna State.
Akpabio who was a two-term governor of oil-rich Akwa Ibom State was the first to step down for the President-elect during the presidential primaries held in Abuja last year.
It is understood that the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs is to be deputised by Kano-born Senator Barau Jibrin, who chairs the Senate Committee on Appropriation.
Abass who enjoys the full support of Governor Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai is credited to have sponsored 75 bills within the life of the National Assembly. It’s unclear who is billed to deputise Abass who chairs the House Committee on Land Transport Committee.
Meanwhile, the youth leader of APC in Northwest, Abdulhamid Moh’d, has appealed to Senator Akpabio and others in the contest for the senate presidency race to support Senator Barau Jibrin in becoming the next Senate President.
He described Jibrin as an exemplary leader, who would carry everyone in the hallowed chamber along in his decision-making.
In a statement by the Moh’d, he particularly urged Akpabio to work with Jibrin as his deputy, noting that Jibrin as long term serving lawmaker, is more well rounded and experienced.
He said, “Jibrin will be a four-term senator, compared to majority of the first and second term senators, who allegedly want protocols reviewed to suite their ambition of becoming the next leader of the senate.
According to him, prior to Jibrin’s presence in the senate, he has being a legislator and well versed and experienced. Jibrin has brought Moh’d called on the APC party leadership and president-elect, Tinubu to prevail on the matter by galvanising supports for Jibrin as he said.