Attempt to Weaken Opposition in Reps Won't Fly - Gbajabiamila
Following disruption of proceedings at the House of Representatives last Tuesday when some PDP, APGA, LP and Accord members made move to ease out some All Progressives Congress House leaders. The APC Caucus leader and head of minority parties in the House, Femi Gbajabiamila has again described such move as laughable and a twisted logic aimed at undermining existing House rules.
In a statement released on Monday by his aide, Wasiu Olanrewaju-Smart in Abuja, Gbajabiamila rejected the request made by some PDP, APGA, LP, and Accord members to alter minority leadership of the House, 'that is wishful thinking.There will be no such thing. They should read the House rules intelligently and besides, who is fooling who? APGA and LP make partisan democracy in Nigeria a joke', he said .
The House Minority Leader also stressed that all efforts by the ruling PDP in connivance with APGA, LP to weaken the opposition in the lower chamber of the National Assembly would hit the rock, 'They are PDP for all intents and purposes. They hold meetings with PDP, vote with them on the floor of the House and at the governors forum election. They have adopted President Jonathan of the PDP as their presidential candidate. Where in the world is that done. Now thats even ok if thats what they want or how they understand political party independence and democracy, but they shouldn't turn around and pretend to be members of the opposition or minority group when indeed they are part and parcel of the majority. We will not allow moles infiltrate our rank and file. We are far more discerning and astute than that'.
Gbajabiamila noted that efforts to change minority leadership in the House due to collapse of ACN, CPC, ANPP, and a faction of APGA into APC negates provisions of the House Rules.
'Besides the rules are very clear. The minority elect their leaders from amongst themselves as an opposition group and not on individual party basis. There were 6 minority parties in the House prior to now and only 4 minority positions. By their twisted logic, 2 extra positions should have then been created for DPP and PPN that had only 1 member each. Laughable'.
Gbajabiamila however urged the PDP, APGA and LP members to go back to what he earlier called 'strange judgment' restricting the House from changing its leadership.
'Besides, the gentleman who raised the matter of privilege, the former deputy minority now deputy majority leader, Leo Ogor, did not show how his privileged was breached as required by our rules. Perhaps he should go back to the same court where he got his strange judgment stopping the change of House leadership to this time compel the change of Minority leadership', the statement reads in part.
Gbajabiamila also advised his colleagues to focus more on its enormous legislative duties and join hands with Nigerians to ensure safe return of the kidnapped Chibok girls, 'in the meantime lets try and bring back our girls and stop expending legislative energy on irrelevancies. There is much work to be done'.
Personal Research Assistant to
Minority Leader, House of Representatives