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Monday, 25 March 2019

South East APC demand Reps Speaker

South East APC demand Reps Speaker

The South East All Progressives Congress, APC, Youths Consultative Forum, has called on the leadership of the All Progress Congress to zone the position of speaker to them.

Sir Romanus Oguleme, National Coordinator of the South East APC youths group, told journalists in Abuja that the zone has credible and ranking members of the party in the National Assembly to head any of the two chambers.

According to him, the zone should not be schemed out in the National Assembly leadership as was experienced in 2019.

He said zoning the speaker to the East was in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s promise of inclusive government.

“The excuse in 2015 that South East APC didn’t have ranking members to be considered for positions of principal officers cannot be used again as the region has two returning members in the House.

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“We categorically state that the South East has two ranking members of the APC and these two: chairman House Committee on Healthcare Services, Hon. Chike Okafor and chairperson House Committee on Aviation, Hon. Nkeiru Onyejeocha are eminently qualified to run for Speaker or to be appointed as principal officers.” Oguleme said.

He further stated :
“If the performance of both members in the 8th Assembly should be used as criteria, they have proven themselves capable of handling delicate and sensitive assignments.

“Just as the Hon. Okafor led the Healthcare Services Committee in effectively performing its oversight functions on the health sector, with many Nigerians still remembering the highly publicised probe into the alleged N351 billion fraud in the NHIS as well as stakeholders’ commendation of the House sub-committee of Primary Healthcare Care revitalization, Hon. Onyejeocha performed creditably well in leading her committee in ensuring a good standard of efficiency in the aviation sector”,
The group said in its statement.

According to the group, Okafor, who represents Ehime Mbano/Ihitte Uboma/Obowo federal constituency of Imo State, and who was a former Commissioner for Finance in Imo State, has requisite experience having worked in a bank for many years before joining politics.

When contacted, the lawmaker confirmed that he was interested in contesting for Speaker.

He said he has aligned himself with the call that the South-East deserved to be supported to having positions in the leadership of the National Assembly.

His words: “The 9th House needs a Speaker and a leadership that is experienced and competent.

“We need leadership that has and will display integrity, but we must also strike a balance in terms of geo-political representation in the leadership of the National Assembly.

“This is why I fully support any call for a South East Speakership”.

On if the South-East would accept a position in the leadership of the National Assembly, if the APC fails to zone Speakership to it, the lawmaker said that decisions on such issues are taken as events unfold.

“The party will come up with its zoning arrangement and as a loyal party man, whose loyalty has remained unshaken even in difficult times, I will decide my next move based on the directives of my party.

“However, I believe that zoning the office of Speaker or even positions of leadership in the House to the South East, will go a long way in repositioning and strengthening the APC in the region.

“Our party needs high ranking members of government to reposition the party in my region and as I have done in the last four years, i am willing to play a role in making APC strong in Igbo land”, he said.

In the outgoing House, Hon. Okafor was considered for the position of Whip but he was later denied the position because he was not yet a ranking member and was given Health Committee chairmanship because of his commitment and dedication to the APC.

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