Seven aspirants vying for the position of the Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 10th Assembly, on Friday, vowed to present a consensus candidate that will contest with the anointed candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Hon. Tajudeen Abbas.

The election of the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the 10th Assembly is scheduled for 13th June, 2023 after the president’s proclamation.

Speaking during the formal declaration of the outgoing Deputy Speaker of the 9th Assembly, Hon. Idris Wase, in Abuja, the lawmakers while delivering their goodwill messages unanimously vowed to support one of their own to contest for the office.

In his address, Chairman, House Committee on Appropriations, Muktar Betara Aliyu, said “I have known the Deputy Speaker since 2007 and we have been together since then. For us forming a group, we are not fighting, we are all APC members. A consensus candidate can be picked but we must sit and say this is the person we have picked to lead us. I assure all my Colleagues, Members-elect, former Members, we are not going to fight. We are going to agree to support one of us as Speaker.”

Also speaking, Hon. Yusuf Gagdi, who reiterated the group’s resolve to ensure independence of the legislature, saying “six of us aspirants are here to support the campaign of our Deputy Speaker.”

He added: “Six of us are determined to protect democracy because the House of Representatives is the House of the Nigerian people. By the time we lock ourselves in the House, no leadership of the House will be there. May God Almighty see our heart and chose the leader.”

Outgoing Deputy Speaker of the House, Idris Wase, has said that his intention to run for the speakership of the incoming 10th assembly was to evolve a virile and truly independent legislature.

Hon. Wase’s promise was contained in his 10 point agenda unveiled during the formal declaration to vie for the office of the Speaker in the 10th Assembly.

He also promised to prioritize security, fiscal discipline and economic prosperity and social welfare schemes and programmes.

He said: “Generally speaking, my conduct will be motivated by an avowed commitment to national integration to build a society where justice reigns.

“We need to build on the successes recorded so far within the context of national laws and support Nigerian international commitments that seek to promote national interest and welfare of all Nigerian citizens”

Hon. Wase, who represents Wase Federal Constituency of Plateau State, recalled that since the return of democracy in 1999, the North central geo-political zone where he hails from has not produced the Speaker.

He appealed to the power brokers to cede the post to the zone, adding that it was his turn.

“It must also be noted that it is only the North Central in the entire country that has not produced the Speaker in 24 years after the return of democracy to Nigeria in 1999.

“Fellow Nigerians, Nigeria is built on the supremacy of the law and the sacredness of the Constitution for justice to reign and to keep the peace in the country.

“It is on the strength of this that I offer myself to contest and serve as the Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 10th Assembly in clear deference to Nigerian constitutional provision and with your full support and understanding of Nigerians so that the journey we began together long time ago can continue to prosper.

“At this point, I will use the words of my leader, emilokan emilokan, emilokan,” Wase said.

Other members of the G7 who spoke at the event are: Hon. Sani Jaji (APC-Zamfara); Hon. Sada Soli (Katsina State) and Hon. Princess Mariam Onouha (APC-Imo).