Reps Speaker names House Committee Chairmen

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Tajudeen Abbas, on Thursday, unveiled the chairmen and deputy chairmen of the various standing committees.

This is just as the number of committees increased from the previous 109 to 134.

Ex-Deputy Speaker of the House, Idris Wase, was named Chairman, Committee on Federal Character while ex- Chairman, Committee on Appropriation, Muktar Betara, emerged Chairman, Committee on the Federal Capital Territory.

Former House leader, Alhassan Ado-Doguwa, a supporter of Abbas in the race for the Speakership, bagged the chairmanship of the House Committee on Petroleum Resources(upstream).

Others included Aminu Jaji (Ecological Fund), Miriam Onuoha (Tertiary Education Trust Fund), Abubakar Bichi (Appropriation), Afam Ogene (Renewable Energy), James Faleke (Finance), and Salam Bamidele (Public Accounts Committee).

Yusuf Gadgi and Sada Soli, who headed the Committees on Navy and Water Resources, respectively, in the ninth Assembly, retained the same Committees.

Khadija Ibrahim, wife of the former Yobe State Governor, Bukar Ibrahim, was named Chairman, Committee on the Nigerian Maritime and Safety Agency, along with Ikenga Ugo-Chinyere (Petroleum Downstream), Leke Abejide (Customs and Excise), Victor Nwokolo ( Power), Bello El-Rufai (Banking Regulations), and Erhiakate Ibori-Suenu (Niger Delta Development Commission), among others.

Explaining how the leadership of the various committees emerged, the Speaker noted that the selection committee was guided by a deep sense of fairness and inclusiveness.

“The Selection Committee relied on the capacities, experiences, knowledge, competencies, skills, and legislative interests of members in assigning colleagues to different committees.

“This, we did, to ensure that we have round pegs in round holes. Indeed, we had to cope with the onerous task of assigning members to the different committees on the basis of the criteria listed earlier.

“Nonetheless, I am not unmindful of the fact that in spite of the painstaking efforts of the Selection Committee in setting up these committees, not everybody will be satisfied in terms of choice of committees. I particularly carry a very heavy burden to appreciate members for their unanimous endorsement of my aspiration to lead this House.

“However, it is practically impossible to make every member a Committee Chairman or Vice Chairman. But, let me remind you that there are limitless opportunities within the House, and I assure you that we will provide these opportunities for every member desirous of service to do so.

“While the outcome may not be perfect, favourable and satisfactory to all, I have no doubt that the Selection Committee has done what could be considered to be in the best interest of the House and nation.

“It is, therefore, proper and fitting, at this juncture, to express my gratitude to members of the Selection Committee for their sacrifices and commitment in the constitution of the committees we are inaugurating today (Thursday).

“You would recall that the leadership of the House has consistently assured members of its resolve to be fair to all, irrespective of political leanings and affiliations.

“There are no grade ‘A’ or the so-called ‘juicy committees’ as some erroneously often think. Every committee of the House enjoys equal status, powers and privileges as mere working groups to discharge the mandate given to us by our constituents,” Abbas added.

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