Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, said his visit to acting Clerk to the National Assembly (CNA), Mr. Olatunde Ojo on Tuesday was an extension of President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts at ensuring harmony between all arms of the federal government.
“The National Assembly is supposed to resume today (Tuesday), but it has been postponed and I had intended that as soon as the resumption takes place, I will be here as part of my effort to support the President’s decision that there must be a much more cordial relationship between the Execuitve and the Legislature”, Akpabio told journalists after a closed door meeting with the CNA.
In addition to the said mission, the former governor of Akwa-Ibom State said he also used the opportunity to congratulate the acting CNA for his elevation “and of course, to solicit the continuous cooperation of the National Assembly towards the development of the Niger Delta region”.
According to him, “the president recently setup a tripartite committee made up of the party (APC), the National Assembly and the Executive to ensure oneness because we are running one government, and it is important we remember that in all we do, we want to leave a legacy for Nigeria and we cannot do that if all the arms of government are not cooperating”.
In apparent reference to controversies that arose between him and the National Assembly over investigations into budgetary expenditure of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Akpabio said his belief was that “whatever disagreement that could have occurred between my own ministry and the National Assembly must have been as a result of mischief, and that mischief must be put to rest so that we can work in one accord for the sake of the nation”.
He continued that “as the governor of my state, all the achievement is as a result of collective efforts, the State House of assembly working closely with my administration and so whatever achievement we are going to make in the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs will require the cooperation of the National Assembly.
“It is important as a minister to make efforts to work towards ensuring that cooperation come on board for the benefit of the region.
“The National Assembly is one, and we must ensure that there is harmony between the Legislature and the Executive; today we have a better National Assembly in terms of Legislative-Executive harmony and cordiality. Here and there; even in the family, sometimes the husband and wife may have issues and sometimes the brothers and sisters may have issues, but it is the way they resolve it that makes that family strong”.