The vice-president-elect, Kashim Shettima has revealed why the leadership of the 10th National Assembly must not be of the same religious faith.
Kashim Shettima, who spoke during a meeting some of the house of representatives members-elect on Friday, urged lawmakers-elect to accept the All Progressives Congress (APC) zoning arrangement for the leadership of the 10th National Assembly.
He was reacting to controversy trailing that nomination of Godswill Akpabio, a former minister of Niger Delta affairs, and Abbas Tajudeen, a house of representatives member from Kaduna, for the national assembly leadership positions.
While Akpabio was nominated for president of the senate, Tajudeen was endorsed for the speaker of the house of representatives.
APC also nominated Barau Jibrin, senator representing Kano north, as deputy senate president, and Benjamin Kalu, a lawmaker from Abia and current house spokesperson, as deputy speaker.
Speaking during the meeting with lawmakers-elect, Shettima said the choice of the forthcoming NASS leadership of is for the purpose of faith balancing and in Nigeria’s best interest.
He emphasized that the ruling APC seeks to prevent a situation where all the top officials of the incoming administration would be of the same faith, as it could potentially validate the negative narrative of the Islamisation agenda of Nigeria.
Shettima added that the leadership of the forthcoming national assembly must be inclusive because the “stability of the nation is much more important than any other consideration”.
He said: “I will take it upon myself to reach out to the other contenders. Rt Hon Betara is my brother. We are from the same sub-region; we are from the same state and I have the best relationship with him. I met him two nights ago. I will sustain that.
“Around 1pm today (Friday), I met with Rt. Hon. Ahmed Wase, the Deputy Speaker. We will continue with the engagements so we can have a rancor-free assembly.”
“When Obasanjo lost grip of the National Assembly, his first tenure was a failure. President Buhari could do little in his first term because of rancorous relationship between the executive and the legislature.
“What was accomplished in the last four years was because of the harmonious relationship between the executive and legislature.
“President Goodluck Jonathan lost grip of the National Assembly when Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal emerged as the Speaker and that rancorous relationship culminated in his defeat in 2015 general election. Mariam Onuoha is my friend. I will reach out to her.
“What we are trying to avoid is a situation whereby the number one citizen, number two citizen, the number three citizen, the number four citizen are all of the same faith. That will validate the negative narrative of Islamization of Nigeria.
‘This is why my principal, a fair-minded leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is more inclined towards having the number three citizen from the South/south or the south-east. Even in the current circumstance that we find ourselves in, the stability of the nation is much more important than any other consideration.
“All other considerations have to be relegated to the background because we are talking about the stability of the nation.
“We are talking about inclusivity, we are talking about togetherness because nation-building is a continuous work in progress and politics is about perception, it is about optics. I am quite glad that Benjamin Kalu will emerge as the deputy speaker. The hope for the black man rests with the people of this country.”
KanyiDaily recalls that Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi had revealed why he dropped his senate president bid and endorsed Godswill Akpabio.