By Akombo Aondona, Abuja
The National Working Committee (NWC) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has announced the party’s nomination of Sen. Godswill Akpabio from the South-South for the position of Senate President and Hon. Tajudeen Abass from the North West for the position of Speaker, House of Representatives in the incoming 10th National Assembly.
But there indications that the zoning arrangement has failed to meet the expectations of certain APC members-elect and power blocs, which have vowed a showdown with the party by fielding candidates against Akpabio and Abass when the 10th National Assembly is proclaimed in June.
Addressing journalists after the party’ meeting on Monday 8 May, 2023 at the APC Media Centre, Abuja at the APC National Secretariat Abuja, National Publicity Secretary, APC, Barr. Felix Morka said the zoning arrangements was done in consultation with the President-Elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
In the other zoning arrangements the APC picked Sen. Barau Jubrin from North West for Deputy Senate president while Hon. Ben Kalu from South East is tipped for the position of Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives respectively.
Morka, accompanied by the APC National Women Leader, Beta Edu and deputy women leader, said: “The National Working Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC) met today, Monday, May 8, 2023 to consider reports of consultations and meetings held with the President- Elect, His Excellency, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, other Party leaders and stakeholders on zoning arrangement for 10th National Assembly leadership positions.
“The NWC noted with respect the outcome of the meetings held between the President-Elect and the leadership of the NWC. The NWC called for further and better consultation with necessary stakeholders in order to assure the support of the aspirants to the National Assembly leadership positions and members of the Party nationwide.
“The zoning arrangement reported to the NWC is as follows:
1. Senate President – South South Senator Godswill Akpabio – Akwa Ibom.
2. Deputy Senate President – North West-Senator Barau Jubrin – Kano.
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES:
3. Speaker. House of Representatives North West-Hon. Abass,Tajudeen – Kaduna
4. Deputy Speaker South East-Hon. Ben Kalu – Abia
“We urge our party leaders, members and all Nigerians to continue to work for peace and progress of our country during and beyond the current period of leadership transition.”
But feelers from the APC have it that ambitious members-elect would discountenance the party’s decision on zoning by running against the nominees.
According to a source who pleaded anonymity, “the zoning announcement is not bidding on us. We are determined to choose our leaders by ourselves on the floor of that National Assembly come June. It is not a big matter to present our own candidates at the NASS proclamation. And we shall do it. We shall also succeed. It is no big deal. They did it against Mulikat Akande for Tambuwal to emerge and we can do it too.”
The source added that aggrieved APC NASS memebers-elect would work with the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party members-elect to stop Akpabio and Abass.