Reps Speaker: Why Gbajabiamila, Jibrin Accord Broke Down | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Reps Speaker: Why Gbajabiamila, Jibrin Accord Broke Down

Posted: May 12, 2015 at 8:24 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Rotimi Akinwumi,  Abuja


Facts have emerged on why the attempt by the camps of Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila and that of Abdulmumin Jibrin to form a united front in the struggle for the Speakership of the House of Representatives broke down on Monday.

Both camps were scheduled to hold a joint press conference at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja  to make a public announcements on the formation of the alliance, but that of Gbajabiamila pulled out at the last minute, because of what it perceived as deceit on the part of Jibrin.

Jibrin, a returning legislator from Kano State was the first legislator to openly announce his desire to become the Speaker of the House of Representatives in the 8th Session to be formed in June, irrespective of the fact that he is from the same North-West geo-political zone with the President-elect, General Muhammadu Buhari.

A dependable source within the National Assembly, however, said with the reality dawning on him on the fact that his kite might not fly, Jibrin was said to have approached the campaign team of Gbajabiamila at the weekend with a proposal that he would make an open declaration of stepping down for Gbajabiamila while he would be compensated with a position in the leadership structure of the lower parliament whichever might be zoned to North West.

However, the deal broke down Monday when loyalists of Gbajabiamila drew his attention to a news item in the media  announcing the formation of the union and the fact that Jibrin would become the Deputy Speaker candidate to run the race with Gbajabiamila.

The news was allegedly planted by Jibrin camp to achieve an objective.

According to the  source which craved annoimity, Gbajabiamila was not comfortable with the insinuations in the news item  that Jibrin has been promised the Deputy Speakership slot whereas, the leaders of the party are sticking to a South  West/North East paring for the Speaker and Deputy Speaker seats.

“The truth is that Jibrin was trying to play a fast one on the rest zones in the North.

“When he told Gbajabiamila at the weekend that he would step down for him, Gbajabiamila who was sceptical of the promise asked him (Jibrin) to make a public show of the event.

“Jibrin asked Gbajabiamila to make an appearance at the planned event where he (Gbajabiamila) will read an acceptance speech as a means of solidifying the relationship.

“However, with the news in some selected newspapers today (Monday) the doubt about his sincerity became more pronounced.

“All that Gbajabiamila asked him to do was to go to Transcorp Hilton with his own supporters among the present crop of lawmakers in the parliament but Jibrin could not come up with even five members.

“The issue is that immediately the news broke that Jibrin was to be made a Deputy Speaker candidate to run with Gbajabiamila, leaders of the party called Gbajabiamila and asked him who gave him the permission to pick Jibrin especially a North Westerner as his running mate when the party arrangement for now, was a South West and North East joint ticket slot.

“Gbajabiamila denied the news and that was why he insisted that Jibrin must do the press conference alone and must bring his supporters along to show his strength in the parliament.”

“Though I wasn’t at Transcorp Hilton today, but I was reliably informed that Jibrin could not gather up to three members to show his popularity which proved clearly that he was not a strong contender at all, even if the race was thrown open and the party deciding not to zone the seats anymore.

“It is a fact that Jibrin was only looking for a pedestal to boost his image and present himself as a popular candidate with support, but he’s not.

“He’s just looking for a means of having a pedestal to negotiate for something bigger position in the 8th Assembly or probably retain his position as the Chairman, House Committee on Finance,” the source, a member of the parliament disclosed to Daily Independent last night.