A third-time Member of the House of Representatives, Mohammed Umaru Bago, has said he is vying for the office of Speaker of the 9th Assembly because the North Central deserves to have the seat.
Bago, representing Chanchaga Federal Constituency of Niger State, argued that since 1999, the North Central had not produced speaker of the house or even a deputy, adding that all other geopolitical zones in the country had produced speakers and or deputy speakers.
Responding to questions when he visited Daily Trust office yesterday in Abuja, Hon. Bago said he was winning the support of the majority of his colleagues in the lower chamber due to his legislative experience garnered over the years, adding that he had good plans for the institution to work better.
Bago who was accompanied by Dr. Ibrahim Dooba and Rep Bimbo Daramola and Rep Victor Afam Ogene were received by the Deputy Editor-in-Chief of Media Trust, Malam Mahmud Jega, and other editors.
The legislator appealed to his party, the APC, to desist from any form of imposition and recognise the North Central to reduce tension and acrimony.
“We have done so well for the victory of this party (APC) and we are only asking for fairness in the political equation of this country. Since 1999, nobody has been given opportunity in the House of Representatives from the North Central to either be a speaker or deputy speaker.
“But now, take for instance you have six children and six pieces of meat and you say you want to give one child two pieces, one child will be left out of the sharing. We are saying that if we are coming from the position of progressives, fairness, equity and change mantra, there is need for us to write our party’s name in gold,” he said.
According to Bago, “If we want stability, now that Nigeria has been divided into ethnic lines, socio-economic issues and insecurity have come up, this is an opportunity to balance power.
“The North West has a president; the South West has a vice president; remaining four geopolitical zones. Now, you heard the party saying that they want the senate presidency to go to the North East and its deputy to the South East or South South. Now you have two positions left.
“It is just unfair for you to be thinking of giving a zone which did not perform as much as we performed in the North Central; we have more votes. But somebody somewhere is now thinking of giving someone from the South West again, which already recorded two speakers and one deputy speaker.
“It is very wrong for anybody to think that you can run the parliament without the opposition. They are an integral part of the parliament, they are elected and they also have a voice.
“They are 149 combined and still counting. We are saying if they are 150, that means they have a voice that is very strong and you can’t take them for granted,” he said.
He said it was necessary to recognise the youths for such positions in line with the Not Too Young to Run Act, adding that if given the mandate, his regime would ensure the enactment of laws that would enable the APC achieve its manifesto and good governance in different sectors.