Honourable Tajudeen Abass: The Capable hand
By Haruna Okatahi
Before we deft into the Ninth assembly and the scorecard of each and every legislator as it basically affects those returning and vying for the position of presiding officers, it is of utmost importance to refresh our minds on what the legislature is and what basic role a legislator is elected to perform.
A legislature is an assembly with the authority to make laws for a political entity such as a country or city. They are often contrasted with the executive and judicial powers of government.
The legislature also exist to checkmate the activities of the Executive and even the Judiciary.
Laws enacted by legislatures are usually known as primary legislation. In addition, legislatures may observe and steer governing actions, with authority to amend the budget involved.
The members of a legislature are called legislators. In a democracy, legislators are most commonly popularly elected by the people of either senatorial districts or constituencies.
While legislatures have nominally the sole power to create laws, the substantive extent of this power depends on details of the political system. In Nigeria, the size and the structure of Bi Camera legislature has made it a rigorous task to get laws passed concurrently in both chambers of the parliament and also the critical aspect of the law passed depend on the president who is the head of the executive, he the president asserts his signature on the bill for it to become law and it does not end there in some cases the implementation of the law is in the hand and the prerogative of the executives, these are all the hurdles to be scaled before a law comes into being.
Looking at the ninth assembly critically from the perspective of law making, it is expedient to us to note a critical point in the political life of the country. The politics of the country is so dynamic and complex that only laws that will have direct visible impact on the lives of the people and whatever they represent will help quench the raging fire of agitation from so many minority groups whose notion is that governance and the government is not being fair to them in all ramifications. Also bringing institutions to the doorstep of these ethnic minorities will also go along way in solving the problem of agitations and the claim of injustice.
In the past, community that were privileged to have government institutions established in their domain seems to take advantage of it to assert authority on such institutions by being the major beneficiaries.
Just like developed countries where the tenure of the legislators are unlimited unlike the other arms of government, in Nigeria, we are not able to tap into the benefit of this idea by those that formulated the democracy that we practice, the whole idea of allowing legislators to represent their constituents as many times as possible is to entrench stability in the political system. In Europe and America, the older legislators grows in the parliament the more experienced they become, and Nigeria is not suppose to be an exemption.
Looking at the performance index of all legislators in the Night assembly, both in the senate and the house of representatives, there is no gainsaying about the facts and figures available that, Honourable Tajudeen Abass may have surpassed the expectation of not only his constituents, but Nigerians as a whole and this is evident in the number of bills as presented and sponsored, number of bills passed and number of bills assented to by the president.
Honourable Tajudeen Abbass will likely be compared to Senator Amy Klobuchar and American congressman (a Minnesota Democrat) with 27 bill which is the highest number of bills passed into law in the United State by any lawmaker in the present congress.
On his part Honourable Tajudeen Abbass hold the ace in Nigeria as the best legislator in the Ninth assembly and no wonder his people gave him their mandate again without stress. Looking at his antecedent, Honourable Tajudeen Abbass deserves to be the next speaker of the house of representatives in order to guide incoming legislators coming to the tenth assembly for utmost performance.
What else can a parliamentarian do for not only his people but for Nigerians as a whole, a parliamentarian with the highest number of sponsored bills from 2011 till date, (72 in total) in the ninth assembly the highest number of sponsored bills,(more than 20) and the highest number of bills passed and signed into law by the president (21 bills) the bill are bills that gave birth to institutions not only in the northern part of the country but across the length and breadth of the country, for example bills establishing 18 Federal Medical Centers across the country was sponsored by him.
The success of any nation in any sector depends on the people put forward to preside over it, be it economy, politics, science and technology e.t.c. the choice of leaders is a major determinant of the success to be recorded, putting our best in the forth coming parliament regardless our various biases will be our greatest strength as a people at this moment, if we must compete with other nations of the world.
Honourable Tajudeen Abbass is undoubtedly our best hand as a nation for the speakership position of the incoming 10th House of representatives if we must experience the great and working Nigeria that we all crave for.
Comr. Haruna Okatahi
Convener conference of Civil Society for Transparency and Accountability
Writes from Abuja.