A lawyer, Mr Leo Aggrey, has lauded the emergence of two former principal officers of the 7th Senate as Deputy Senate President and Senate Leader of the 8th Senate respectively.
Aggrey siad in Calabar that “the development is good for Nigeria’s democracy.”
According to him, the election of Senators Ike Ekeweremadu and David Mark of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will make the Senate competitive and that it will checkmate the APC.
He said: “wonderful work by the PDP in being effectively involved in the process. It is a very good omen for our democracy. The APC has bungled this situation.”
Aggrey blamed the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the situation, saying the governing party had failed to manage all the varying interests.
Another lawyer, Mr Remi Agwuezie, described the situation as “a bombshell”, saying it was unprecedented in the history of Nigerian democracy.
“It is a bombshell indeed. APC refused to learn from history and is paying dearly for it.
“The good thing is that the issue of godfatherism is gradually becoming a thing of the past.
“This is a hybrid change.’’
Also some prominent Nigerians on Tuesday urged the newly elected Senate President, Bukola Saraki, to give Nigeria’s 8th Assembly a human face to its legislation.
Speaking in Lagos, a political Economist, Prof Pat Utomi, advised Saraki to bring the desired change that Nigerians needed from the 8th Assembly.
“Legislation by the 8th Assembly must be people oriented by being beneficial and of interest to all Nigerians.
“You need party discipline, you need the commitment of everybody, thinking of the ordinary Nigerian on the street and how the social order can change in his or her interest.”
Also speaking, the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria National Summit Group (NNSG), Mr Tony Uranta, lauded Saraki over his emergence as senate president and stressed the need for him to discharge his duties as a representative of the Nigerian People.
“Saraki must focus more on bringing about the greater common good, without cheap selfish or partisan gains obscuring his clarity of vision and purity of integrity.
“This 8th Assembly must help expedite the restructuring of Nigeria using the National Conference recommendations as a template,’’ he said.
Uranta, however, called for the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) by the Senate to sanitise the oil and gas sector and make it equitable and workable, curbing corruption by giving teeth to existing Laws.
“In passing the PIB, the Senate must ensure that it removed the clause interpreting host communities to mean the entire nation.
Also speaking, Rev. Austin Nnorom, the South West Secretary of the Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) advised the speaker to allowed a people’s oriented legislation to take place which was absent in the 7th assembly.
“The CNPP position is very clear that our democracy, which is an evolving one, is being deepened everyday with surprises.
“We can see the legislative arm of government today that has taken its stand and posture that is not being affected or interfered with, by any political inclination or imposition.
“It is the will of the people, this is the first step in the right direction by this 8th assembly. With this, we can tell that this people are really out for serious business; this might be the best legislative government we might have so far.
“We congratulate Saraki, we wish him well and we want to believe that he will represent the people,” Nnorom said.
Also the National President of the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF) Alhaji Yerima Shettima, said Saraki’s emergence as the senate president would put an end to god–fatherism in Nigerian politics.
“Saraki’s emergence is a good thing and a welcome development.
“This is the beginning of an end to having a rubber stamp national assembly; no more godfathers manipulation from the outside.
“If we have the likes of Saraki, good and people oriented legislation will be seen everywhere in government,” Shettima said.
He urged Nigerians to give Saraki the needed support to be a good leader.