Former speakers of the House of Representatives have advised the newly elected Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, to reconcile with his party, the All Progressives Congress.
Dogara emerged Speaker of the House on Tuesday in a keenly contested election after polling 182 votes to defeat the APC consensus candidate, Femi Gbajabiamila, who polled 174 votes.
Speaking during a courtesy visit to the speaker yesterday, ex-speaker Umar Ghali Na’Abba said it was imperative for Dogara to reach out to the party for peace to reign.
Na’Abba, who was accompanied on the visit by immediate past Speaker now Sokoto Governor, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, Patricia Etteh and Agunwa Anakwe, also advised the party to see the events of Tuesday as a way of ensuring legislative independence and effectiveness.
Na’Abba, a member of the APC Board of Trustees, stated: “Lawmakers, yesterday (Tuesday), achieved another democratic revolution against a conventional wisdom of imposition of leaders by political parties.
“This has happened not to spite our party but that the legislature under a democratic setting must be independent. What happened yesterday was an effort by lawmakers of both the APC and the PDP to ensure their independence as lawmakers”.
In his response, Dogara said he was humbled by their visit and expressed appreciation to them for finding time to come calling.
“I want to say that the victory of yesterday was a miracle which couldn’t have come about without your prayers and supports”, he said.
Others on the visit were ex-deputy speakers Babangida Nguruje and Emeka Ihedioha. There were also some immediate past principal officers like Mulikat Akande-Adeola and Leo Ogor, Isiaka Mohammed Bawa, Muhammed Mukhtar, Abdulrahman Kawu Sumaila among others.