Mr. Yakubu Dogara, Speaker of the House of Representatives, officially announced that he belongs to the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) at the plenary on Tuesday. He defected from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). Dogara, along with President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki defected since July 2018 but did not announce their defections on the floors of the chambers. As expected, PDP members celebrated as Dogara made the announcement.
The announcement came on Tuesday after the House of Representatives adjourned its plenary session until February 19. The adjournment was sequel to a motion moved by the Deputy House Leader, Idriss Wase (APC-Plateau). The lawmakers on January 16 resumed for the 2019 legislative duty after the Christmas and New Year break.
Moving the motion, Wase, who represents Wase Federal Constituency of Plateau, said that the adjournment became imperative because of preparations toward the forthcoming general elections. He said that the postponement of plenary sittings would allow members vying for one position or the other to focus on their campaigns and other activities of their political parties. The Speaker, therefore, put the motion to vote and it was unanimously supported by the members.
The media reports that the legislators, after passing the Minimum Wage Bill, did not deliberate on the 2019 Appropriation Bill, which was still before the House, before moving for the adjournment. Earlier at the plenary, Speaker Dogara, Reps Ahmed Yerima and Edward Pwajok formally announced their defection from the All Progressives Congress to the Peoples’ Democratic Party. While Pwajok represents Jos South/Jos East Federal Constituency of Plateau in the House, Yerima represents Missau/Dambam Federal Constituency of Bauchi State.
The legislators announced their resignations from APC in separate letters to the House of Representatives, which Dogara read on the floor of the House. Dogara, who represents Bogoro/Dass/Tafawa Balewa Federal Constituency of Bauchi State, said that they resigned their membership of the APC due to “irreconcilable differences.” The legislators said that they defected to the PDP after due consultations with their constituencies. The gale of defections has continued to affect the lower chamber in the aftermath of the party primaries, in which several members failed to secure their parties’ tickets for the 2019 elections.