The race for the speakership seat in the House of Representatives has been laced with much controversy since the leadership of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) took it upon itself to zone the position to the northwest.
The party announced that it has nominated Abbas Tajudeen, the federal lawmaker from Kaduna state.
His nomination has triggered a lot of outcry from other top lawmakers, governors, civil society groups and pro-democratic groups.
The burning question at the moment is, ”will APC’s wish override the position of lawmakers in the green chamber and interested aspirants for the coveted position?”
Meanwhile, since the return of democracy in Nigeria in 1999, the House of Representatives has produced eight Speakers.
Below is a list of the Speakers, their regions, and states of origin:
1. Salisu Buhari (1999-2000) – North West/Kano State
Salisu Buhari was the first Speaker of the House of Representatives in the fourth republic. He was from Kano State in the North Central region of Nigeria.
However, he had the shortest stint as Speaker, lasting only six weeks after a media report confirmed that he had lied about his age and certificate.
He claimed to have been born in 1970, whereas he was born in 1963 and lied about being a graduate of the University of Toronto in Canada.
Buhari was later prosecuted and sentenced to two years imprisonment with the option of paying a fine to grant him freedom behind bars.
2. Ghali Na’Abba (2000-2003) – North West/Kano State
Born on 27 September 1958, Ghali Na’Abba succeeded Salisu Buhari as Speaker and served from 2000 to 2003.
He was also from Kano State in the North West region of Nigeria and from an aristocratic family in the state.
Na’Abba is an alumnus of Ahmadu Bello University, where he obtained his first degree in Political Science in 1979.
He later proceeded to the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University in the United States, where he completed his Leadership and Good Governance programme in 2004.
3. Aminu Bello Masari (2003-2007) – North West/Katsina State
Another Speaker from the northwest region. It looks more like the birthright of the northwest region to produce the number four citizen in Nigeria.
Aminu Bello Masari, from Katsina State, served as Speaker from 2003 to 2007. He is currently the seating governor of Katsina state, the same state that produced President Muhammadu Buhari.
4. Patricia Etteh (2007) – South West/Osun State
Finally, it left the northwest region, shifted to the southwest and didn’t last long.
Patricia Etteh was the first female Speaker of the House of Representatives in Nigeria.
She served for a brief period in 2007 before she was impeached. She was from Osun State in the South West region of Nigeria.
5. Dimeji Bankole (2007-2011) – South West/Ogun State
The position did return to the southwest but also set another record, just as the previous by producing the youngest Speaker of the green chamber to date.
At age 37, Dimeji Bankole succeeded Patricia Etteh as Speaker and served from 2007 to 2011.
He was from Ogun State in the South West region of Nigeria.
6. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal (2011-2015) – North West/Sokoto State
The Northwest continued its dominance at the speakership as it produced Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, who served from 2011 to 2015.
He was from Sokoto State in the North West region of Nigeria and is the state’s current governor.
INEC recently announced him as a senator-elect in the just concluded 2023 general elections.
7. Yakubu Dogara (2015-2019) – North East/Bauchi State
Yakubu Dogara succeeded Aminu Waziri Tambuwal as Speaker and served from 2015 to 2019.
Before his stint as Speaker, he served as the House of Representatives Member for Bogoro/Dass/Tafawa Balewa, Nigeria Federal constituency of Bauchi State since 2007.
He was from Bauchi State in the North East region of Nigeria.
8. Femi Gbajabiamila (2019 – present) – South West/Lagos State
Femi Gbajabiamila is the current Speaker of the House of Representatives. He has been in office since 2019.
Before his stint as Speaker, Gbajabiamila was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2003; he represents the Surulere I constituency of Lagos State.
He is known to be a protege and disciple of Nigeria’s president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Leave a Comment