10th Speaker: Gbajabiamila, Wase Clash At Plenary

The frosty relationship between Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila and his deputy, Ahmed Idris Wase again reared its ugly head on Wednesday as the two presiding officers engaged each other in a war of attrition.

Of late, there has been no love lost between the duo following Gbajabiamila’s preference for the APC anointed candidate, Hon. Tajudeen Abbas over his deputy as his successor…..CONTINUE READING

Wase, who felt betrayed by his principal, has been boycotting pre-plenary leadership meetings as well as the speaker’s procession to the plenary.

At Wednesday’s plenary, Wase came to the chambers about one hour after the Gbajabiamila had started presiding.
But the altercation began towards the end of the plenary while adjourning the House, Speaker Gbajabiamila announced the commissioning of the permanent site of the National Institute for Legislative and Democratic Studies (NILDS) at Airport Road by President Muhammadu Buhari at 2:30 pm on Thursday.

He told the Chairman of the rules and business committee, Hon. Fulata to make the order paper for Thursday light so that they can adjourn plenary by 2:00 pm and go for the commissioning.

But Wase countered the directive telling the speaker that plenary is more important than the commissioning, especially at this period of the close of the 9th Assembly.

Apparently surprised by the objection, Gbajabiamila said in all his years as a lawmaker, he has not seen a deputy speaker openly challenging the speaker.

“DS, I have been in this House like enough to know that this is the first time in the history of this House that a deputy speaker will openly oppose what the speaker says.”

But Wase insisted that he must air his opinion saying the primary business of the House was lawmaking and other official businesses, adding that the commissioning of NILDS headquarters was not enough to adjourn the House. He said members willing to attend the commission could do so while the business of the House is not disrupted.

At this point, Gbajabiamila retorted “DS, maybe the importance of NILDS is not clear to you like it is to some of us. We are not adjourning the House for members to attend the commissioning. I said the order paper should be made lighter because I will attend the commissioning.

Wase responded “Mr. Speaker, the House is not about I, but us”.

Turning to the Chairman of the Committee on Rules and Business, Gbajabiamila said: “Make the order paper light for tomorrow. This House will adjourn at 2.00 pm” At this point, honourable members present responded “carried” and the speaker hit the gavel and the house adjourned.

It will be recalled that Wase had at different times accused Gbajabiamila of misleading president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu in endorsing Hon. Tajudeen Abbas and Hon. Benjamin Kalu for speaker and deputy speaker of the 10th House.

He alluded to the fact that he stepped for Gbajabiamila in 2019 and that gesture should be reciprocated. However, Gbajabiamila recently explained that he supported Abbas because of his competence, capacity, and pedigree in lawmaking…..CONTINUE READING