A Coalition of Abia Stakeholders yesterday protested at the gate of the National Assembly will support of the zoning arraignment released by the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the residing offices in the national assembly.
The protesters, made up of politicians, market women, students and members of the Inter-party Advisory Council (IPAC) from Abia State, insisted that they stand by the zoning arrangements of the APC.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) had zoning the office of the Senate President to the South South and the deputy Senate President to the North West.
Also, the office of the speaker was zoned to the North West while the office of the Deputy Speaker was zoned to the South East.
Specifically, the APC zoned the Senate President office to Godswill Akpabio and the Deputy to Sen Barau Jibrin.
For the office of the Speaker, the APC zoned it to Hon Tajudeen Abbas while the office of the deputy speaker was zoned to Hon Benjamin Kalu.
Speaking during a solidarity walk to the gate of the national assembly,
The convener of the coalition who also contested for the Abia State House of Assembly in the last election, Hon Dike Uche, said they stand by the position of the party.
“The party is supreme and we stand by the decision of the party. Even though we wanted the office of the speaker in the South East, but the party is supreme and we will abide by the party’s decision.
“As a matter fact, among all the members that are in the present House of Representatives, Benjamin Kalu has distinguished himself and as the Spokesman of the House in the past four years, it was even better to make him the speaker but because the party is supreme, he has been offered the position of deputy speaker.
“We the Coalition of Abia Stakeholders comprising NANS, IPAC, Market Women and other organizations who have been following the proceedings at the national assembly knows that Ben Kalu can be the speaker.
“But even as deputy speaker, Nigerians will know that he is capable. We are calling on all members-elect to ensure they return Ben Kalu as the deputy speaker.
“Elections are over. The resident-elect is not coming to govern those who voted for him. He will govern those who voted for him and those who did not vote for him. We want credible leaders even at the national assembly.
“So, whether the president elect got a vote in the south east or not, we want the deputy speakership.
“I am a party man, the party is supreme. Ordinarily, we would have wanted Benjamin Kalu to be the speaker.
“Since the party said he should start from the deputy speaker’s office, who knows, he might become president tomorrow,” Uche added.
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