President Bola Tinubu has met with the outgoing Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and the outgoing Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep Femi Gbajabiamila, over the choice of leadership of the incoming 10th National Assembly.
Briefing State House correspondents after the meeting with Tinubu, Lawan said the President emphasised that the emergence of new presiding officers will be for the national interest, interest of the National Assembly, adding that ‘everybody matters in this process.’
Lawan said, “We are getting somewhere and my prayer is we are able to resolve all the outstanding issues by the grace of God. And Mr President is positively disposed to everything being done smoothly.
“We also believe that Mr. President having been a Senator himself and his Vice President also having been a Senator, this is something that they will always wish and pray for.”
Lawan said as the chairman of the 9th National Assembly, he found it dutiful and necessary to work with all the major stakeholders especially the leadership of the country.
He explained that Mr President particularly gave his necessary opinion and advised on how the new leadership of the 10th National Assembly should emerge and what they needed to do to ensure stability, productivity of the National Assembly and to ensure peaceful atmosphere between the legislature and the executive arm of government.
“I have never indicated interest to run for the office of the President of the Senate in the 10th National Assembly. We have worked together with distinguished senators of the 9th National Assembly and members of House of Representatives to create a very clement environment for us to work.
“We have been productive, much more productive than any National Assembly. We have worked very closely with the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and of course that helped the administration also.
“My prayer and wish and hope is that we are able to have peaceful transition in the National Assembly and who will continue to unite everybody in the National Assembly, in the Senate,” the Senate President said.
According to him they wanted to have a leadership in the Senate that will unite Senators to work so well regardless of their political parties and even in the House of Representatives.
“But the truth is I have never indicated interest to run but I have a responsibility to the Senate, the National Assembly having been in the National Assembly for 24 years now, especially when we have 70 per cent of members in the National Assembly.
“Those of us who have been there longer owe everybody that responsibility to at least help mentoring those who are new if we are not going to be presiding officers or in principal positions,” he added.
The Senate President, who said he did not wish to be one of the principal officers, added that he had played his part and was happy that they have played their part and made positive impact.
“We have had our fair share of shortcomings but I can hold my head high on behalf of all my colleagues in the Senate and the National Assembly that this National Assembly has contributed to national development in no mean measure and have succeeded in getting very critical legislations passed and assented to by the former President,” Lawan stated.