Amid the ongoing race for leadership positions in the 10th National Assembly, Senate President Ahmad Lawan stated on Friday that opposition political parties would not have a say in determining the leadership of the Senate and House of Representatives.
However, he acknowledged the need for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to work with opposition parties for stability and to pass constitutional amendments that require a 2/3 majority vote. He emphasized the importance of a bipartisan chamber, saying that a National Assembly that works with the executive would produce better results.
When asked about the reported division in the APC and concerns that the opposition might seize the process, Lawan said that the party is united and that the opposition would work with the APC majority to ensure stability.
Lawan, expressed his confidence that the APC and other leaders will decide who should be the Senate President or Speaker, with the rest of the party members keying in.
The Senate President also praised the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, particularly in reducing insecurity and providing infrastructure across the country.
However, he expressed disappointment that gender bills seeking to promote more opportunities for women in politics and governance did not pass in the ninth National Assembly. He advocated alternative strategies to engage with the legislature and urged newly-elected and returning lawmakers to push for the passage of the pro-women bills in the 10th Assembly.
He also acknowledged lapses in his performance as Senate President but said that the APC administration would continue to work on areas that need improvement.