Tensions Rise In Reps As 150 Lawmakers Challenge Leadership

A major conflict is brewing in the House of Representatives as over 150 first-term members are rallying against the current House leadership, accusing them of marginalization and exclusion from key legislative activities.

Naija News learnt that these discontented lawmakers have formed a pressure group named “Novelty Group” to push their agenda.

Although their initial meeting was scheduled for yesterday evening in Abuja, it was postponed due to the death of Hon Olaide Adewale Akinremi, a member representing Ibadan North Federal Constituency of Oyo State under the All Progressives Congress (APC).

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A source within the group revealed to LEADERSHIP that a new meeting date will be announced following the mourning period for the late lawmaker.

An influential APC member from the South/South region is reportedly spearheading the group’s activities.

Membership of the Novelty Group is rapidly expanding, encompassing representatives from eight political parties across Nigeria’s six geopolitical zones.

The group’s formation is driven by frustration over the House’s perceived subservience to the Presidency, particularly in the swift passage of executive bills and other directives without thorough legislative scrutiny.

A member of the group, who spoke to LEADERSHIP, criticized Speaker Tajudeen Abbas for not asserting the House’s independence and yielding too readily to presidential influence.

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This dissatisfaction extends to Deputy Speaker Benjamin Kalu, House Leader Julius Ihonvbere, and Minority Leader Kingsley Chinda, with some members contemplating their impeachment.

First-term members are also disgruntled with committee chairpersons, accusing them of excluding deputies and other members from oversight functions and benefits. They plan to advocate for a restructuring of House committees to address these issues.

The Novelty Group is committed to addressing these grievances, aiming to reshape the House’s internal dynamics and ensure fairer representation and participation for all members.

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In response to these developments, House spokesman and chairman of the House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Hon. Akin Rotimi Jr., claimed no knowledge of the splinter group but acknowledged the formation of various groups to advance common interests within the legislative process.

He emphasized that the House leadership remains committed to inclusive governance, ensuring that all representatives, including first-term lawmakers, have their voices heard.

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