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Dogara group okays Doguwa as House Leader

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In defiance of the nominees selected by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to occupy the principal offices in the House of Representatives, the Consolidation Group, a group in support of Speaker Yakubu Dogara, has presented its nominees for the posts.
The group presented Hon. Alhassan Ado Doguwa  (Kano APC) from the North-west as the House Leader and Hon. Pally Iriase (Edo APC) from the South-south as the Chief Whip.
Doguwa and Iriase are members of the Loyalists Group headed by Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila who was penciled down by APC for the post of House Leader.
The Consolidation Group also presented Hon. Buba Jibrin  (Kogi APC) from the North-central zone as Deputy House Leader and Hon. Chika Okafor (Imo APC) from the South-east as the Deputy Chief Whip.
In a statement issued by the group’s spokesman, Hon. Jibrin Abdulmumim, the group called on its supporters to intensify lobbying at the zonal caucuses for the emergence of its nominees.
“For the benefit of enlightenment, it is important to state that in terms of the leadership status of these vacant positions, the House Leader is the most senior, followed by the Chief Whip.
“In the spirit of reconciliation and unity, Speaker Dogara has graciously conceded the positions of House Leader and Chief Whip to the Femi Gbajabiamila group.
“Kindly note that Hon. Alhassan Doguwa is the head of the Gbajabiamila group while Hon Pally Iriase was in the speakership race but stepped down for Gbajabiamila and assumed a very prominent role in the same group,” the statement said.
The Consolidation Group urged APC to disregard the July 20 letter of the Loyalists Group, alleging that it was written by Gbajabiamila and Hon. James Faleke without due consultation with the APC caucus in the House, many of whom are in full support of Dogara’s peace efforts.
“If not for the frequent intervention of the past Speaker, Aminu Tambuwal, Gbajabiamila would have been removed as Minority Leader by the South-west caucus in the Seventh Assembly.
“We know him, but it appears Mr. President (Muhammadu Buhari) and the party do not. Time shall tell,” the Dogara group alleged.
In another development, the South-east APC caucus in the House has protested the marginalisation of the zone in the distribution of the positions of principal officers in the lower chamber, as proposed by Gbajabiamila and his supporters.
The caucus, in a letter to the Chairman of the APC, Chief John Oyegun, Buhari, Tambuwal and Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha, dated July 21, 2015, stated that it would only withdraw its suit on the matter before the court if the distribution is resolved in accordance with the proposal made by Dogara on principle offices.
The Loyalists’ Group had argued that the zone could not be accommodated in the distribution office, as it produced only two new members who do not have the cognate legislative experience as prescribed by the House rules.
Referring to the letter by the Loyalists’ Group to Oyegun on Monday, the South-east caucus, in its reaction signed by Hon. Austin Chukwukere argued that any person acquainted with the rules and practice of the House knows that a new member is regarded as having “cognate legislative experience” immediately he is sworn in as a member as it is only new members-elect that are affected by the rule.
The caucus added that established precedents in the Senate and House had ensured that zonal representation is respected, even when there are few lawmakers from a zone.
“It is as a result of this, that the Seventh Senate, elected Senator Ayoola Hosea Agboola, Deputy Chief Whip, even though he was ‘new’ and the only member from his party (Peoples Democratic Party) from the South-west.
“Furthermore, in the Seventh House of Representatives, Hon Mulikat Akande was made House Leader, even though she was one of only five members from her party from her zone.
“Even only recently, in the Eighth Senate, Senator Francis Alimikhena from the South-south has been made Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate, a principal officer, even though he is a ‘new’ member and the only member of APC from the South-south,” the letter read.
It described as an insult the argument from a “non-existent” Loyalists’ Group on the members from the South-east by the tone of the group’s letter “which sought to promote an individual who lost a democratically conducted election but who refuses to give up, and who is so super human that the House cannot function without him”.
The caucus called on the APC to be fair to them due to its contributions to the success of the APC in the last general election.

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POLITICS

2023: Atiku reaches out to Fayose over his call for southern presidency

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Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has reacted to the call by former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, that the south should produce the next president in 2023.

Fayose had on Wednesday said the PDP should give room for power rotation.

According to him, PDP’s constitution provides room for rotational presidency.

Reacting, Atiku’s media aide, Paul Ibe said the PDP presidential candidate will continue to appeal to aggrieved persons ahead of the 2023 election.

He told Premium Times, “It is normal for our people to be aggrieved but the PDP has a way of resolving issues like this and that will be done and we all shall be happy.

“Because the bigger challenge is winning the election, kicking out the APC and stopping them from the many years of impoverishing our people.”

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2023: PDP denies reported suspension of National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said that its National Chairman, Senator Iyorchia Ayu has not been suspended from office.

The National Publicity Secretary of the main opposition party, Debo Ologunagba, made this known in a statement on Wednesday.

The statement followed a social media report that the National Chairman of the party had been suspended by the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) after the party’s national convention.

But the PDP has described the report as a completely false news, existing only in the imagination of mischief-makers who want to destabilize the party.

“It is clear that the false report is the handiwork of vicious anti-people forces who are agitated by the stability, unity, and soaring popularity of our party under the cohesive Sen. Dr. Ayu-led National Working Committee, as well as the intimidating stature of our Presidential and Vice Presidential Candidates, His Excellency, Atiku Abubakar and His Excellency, Sen. Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, respectively,” the statement said.

The party’s spokesman further revealed that Ayu is on a short vacation outside the country.

He pointed out that in accordance with the party’s constitution, the Chairman temporarily transmitted power to the Deputy National Chairman (North), Amb. Umar Iliya Damagum.

He also said that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was informed of the development.

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Wike meets PDP senators, Orubebe

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The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike on Thursday received the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leadership in the Senate in Rumuepirikom, his country home in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state.

The PDP delegation was led by the Senate Minority Leader, Philip Aduda.

Also a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godsday Orubebe met with Wike

Orubebe recently resigned from the Peoples Democratic Party.

In attendance at the meeting were the Senate Minority Whip, Chukwuka Utazi; Shuaibu Lau, Danjuma La’ah and Barry Mpigi.

A Government House source said the senators arrived at the governor’s residence some minutes past 3pm and immediately went into a closed door with their host.

The outcomes of the separate meetings were not made public.

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