National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Adams Oshiomhole has vowed that this time around, members of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will not be Speaker, Deputy Speaker or any of the major leader in the 9th federal House of Representatives.
He also declared that even if PDP lawmakers bribe APC memvers with one billion Naira each, the party will not do any business with the opposition party as regard the House leadership.
Addressing about new 164 members-elect Monday in Abuja, when he led the APC National Working Committee (NWC) members to an interactive meeting with the new lawmakers, National Chairman said apart from Minority Leader and statutory Public Account Committee chairmanship position, no member of the PDP will be allowed to hold any position in the incoming 9th Assembly.
“Somebody told me the opposition party people are already doing something, raising money to bribe people and I said no we are anti corruption, we can not be corrupted. If they bring One Billion Naira to each member, PDP person will not be Speaker, a PDP person will not be Deputy Speaker, a PDP person will not be Whip, a PDP person will not be Leader and a PDP person will not take any of the Committee that are meant for the ruling party. We are determine to achieve that and be rest assured that the party will stand by you.
“We have the numbers to produce the Speaker and we will produce the Speaker, who must be a member of the APC. We have the numbers to produce the Deputy Speaker and we will use the numbers to produce the Deputy Speaker, who must be a member of the APC. We have the number and we must use the numbers to elect a House Leader who must be a member of APC. We have the numbers and we will use the numbers to produce a Chief Whip and a Deputy Whip who must be members of the APC. I think the only position that we are not interested in is the Minority Leader. Let it remain minor in the hands of the minors in the opposition.
While calling on the new federal lawmakers not to allow anybody to divide that, Oshiomhole assure that his leadership will carry out an extensive consultations with President Muhammadu Buhari and all the leaders of the APC.
“We will work out a sensible zoning formular that sees to carry everybody along and give people chances to demonstrate their capacities and their capabilities. We are working on that.
“We will not share power in the House of the Repreaentatives and the leadership must ensure that critical committees that drive government are chaired only by APC members. If the Nigeria people wanted to be chairmen of committees they would have voted for them. So all the chairmen of committees, except one that is statutory reserve for opposition, which is Public Account, they can have that. So, we would not do the kind of thing that happened the last time in which some APC members as members of the leading party became distance spectators in the management of committees, when PDP had majority of the strategic committees in the House, that will not happen in the next Assembly.
“We are aware that they believe they can use the divide and rule by sponsoring many people within our ranks to contest for which of the position so that they then become the king maker and in return the person will offer them some chairmanship seats. Hon members and comrades I’m sure are not going to do business with them. We will see them as partners in progress but in tge democracy the rule is, and it is a universal rule, majority must have their way but minority must be allowed to have their say.
“So PDP and other minority can have their say but working together APC must have it way in legislative agenda, in the leadership of the National Assembly and the leadership of the committees in the National Assembly. I thought we should make this thing clear so that those who may not understand what is happening don’t fall into the trap.”
Speaking on behalf of the House of Reps. first timers, Hon. Olubunmi Tunde Ojo from the Akoko North-east North-west federal constituency, said the forum of the first timers are united as a block and “we are already talking to our colleagues in other smaller parties. We assured you that we will be loyal to the party.”
Another speaker, Hon. Sanusi Garba, adviced the party leaders to learnt from the just concluded election and start planning ahead of the 2023 general elections.
He also called on the Oshiomhole-led NWC to keep all the elected members united instead of dividing them.