by Musa Abdullahi
As Nigerians await the official announcement of the zoning of principal offices of the National Assembly by the All Progressives Congress (APC), campaigns for the office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives remained unabated as one of the contestants, Jibrin Abdulmumin, has officially written to incoming members of the eighth session of the House of Representatives, intimating them of his desire to become the next speaker.
In a letter addressed to all members-elect, the speakership aspirant said, “I, Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin, humbly present myself to be elected as Speaker of the eighth House of Representatives. In this noble endeavour, honourable members, I hereby solicit with profound respect, your support, that of members of the executive committee and the leadership of our great party, All Progressives Congress (APC), and of course, the support of all Nigerians.
“Having met with many of you and spoken to many others on phone, I have no doubt in the quality and competence of members that will constitute the 8th House of Representatives.
In the letter titled, “Let’s Deepen the Change”, Jibrin said: “ As a way of strengthening its cherished tradition of independence, the 360-member House will vote to elect a new Speaker in June on the basis of merit. I believe I’m well-equipped for this position, I have the requisite qualification, aptitude and experience to hold the post of Speaker of the House of Representatives.
“My background and experience speak for me. I attended public educational institutions from primary school right up to university in Nigeria at both the Universities of Abuja and Ahmadu Bello University Zaria. This experience availed me a deep knowledge of our country’s complexities and challenges.
“Yet, as an alumnus of London, Harvard and Swiss Business Schools, I’m capable of drawing inspiration from world-class ideas to address everyday problems of our people and our country. All this add to my experience in the private sector and as a university lecturer before joining politics.”
“I was elected into the House in 2011, and have been Chairman of the Committee on Finance since then, a position that has given me a deep knowledge of public finance and the economy of Nigeria. As Chairman of the committee on finance, we achieved a good number of significant accomplishment in terms of fiscal discipline, revenue and budgetary issues.
“It is precisely such depth of experience that a Speaker should possess at this critical time when Nigeria requires deep and far-reaching economic reform to weather the turmoil of declining global oil prices. The last four years in the House has given me a solid understanding of the workings of the House of Representatives.”
On his agenda as a Speaker, he said, “I have presented a three-point agenda which will guide me and my colleagues towards an improved performance of our collective legislatives duties. The three- point agenda centres on the war against corruption, productivity, capacity building, and transparency as well as continuity in legislative business.
“So far, I remain the only aspirant that has come out with a clear agenda of what my focus will be if elected. In the days ahead, I will be meeting you at your state and zonal caucuses and also continue meeting with other individuals and interest groups in the country to further advocate my candidature.
“Finally, to our fellow Nigerians and the 360 honourable members that will shoulder this great responsibility of electing a new Speaker in the 8th House, it is important we all appreciate that our choice will determine how the new dawn and wind of change unfolds in the House of Representatives.” he said in the three-page letter.