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NASS poll: Why some performing lawmakers lost their seats – Gbajabiamila

NASS poll: Why some performing lawmakers lost their seats – Gbajabiamila

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NASS poll: Why some performing lawmakers lost their seats – Gbajabiamila

The House of Representatives’ Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, has said that the outcomes of the last presidential and parliamenta­ry elections did not take into account the performance of the national lawmakers.

He said the election was deter­mined by sentiments anchored mainly on ethnicity and religion rather than performance.

The speaker said this when the executives of the House of Representatives Press Corps led by its chairperson, Grace Ike, visited him in his office.

Gbajabiamila lauded the Press Corps for “being support­ive and playing a critical role in nation building.”

He said “the contribution of the Press Corps to the develop­ment of the country could not be quantified.”

The speaker regretted that the last National Assembly election was determined by other factors different from the performances of lawmakers.

He said: “It was a hard won battle not just for me but for many of our colleagues on the floor there. All 360 of us. Many were unlucky. Some were lucky. I used the word ‘lucky’ deliber­ately because this election was not as it should be, not so much about the performance of mem­bers whether on the floor or in their constituencies. It was about a lot of other things.

“It was about religion. It was about ethnicity. It was about so many other things which I hope that as we develop as a nation, one’s election would be based solely, or at least mostly on his or her performance on the floor and in the constituency.

“That is what I hope would happen as we move along and that is why I mentioned the Electoral Act that was just passed. That is why I fought tooth and nail to make sure the Elector­al Act adopted strictly the direct mode for primaries because of elections. Even though at the general elections members lost, a lot of members actually lost their elections at the primaries, where their acceptance by the constituents was not put to test. What was put to test was what one or two leaders in their con­stituencies determined whether they were returning or not. So we lost a lot of legislators even at the primaries level, and that does not help our democracy.”

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