Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, yesterday constituted 96 Standing Committees to oversight various ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of government.
Dogara, who announced the composition of the committees and their chairmen at plenary, did not allow any comment as he called for adjournment after the announcement.
The number of Standing Committees was increased from 89 in the immediate past 7th Assembly to 96. New committees were created while some existing committees were split.
Recall that Dogara had previously pledged to trim down the number of the committees to avoid duplication of functions.
In the distribution of chairmanship slots, while the All Progressives Congress (APC) members in the House got 48 slots, lawmakers of the opposition parties will chair 47 committees – 45 for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and one each for the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA).
LEADERSHIP had hinted in its October 21, 2015 edition that pre-election agreements entered by Dogara with some zonal caucuses and other political power blocs before the closely contested June 9 speakership election would determine the composition of the Standing Committees.
Dogara’s allies are in charge of key committees: Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin (APC, Kano) will chair the House Committee on Appropriation; Hon. Bashir Baballe Ila (APC, Kano) will chair the House Services Committee; Hon. Babangida Ibrahim (APC, Katsina) will head Finance Committee; Hon. Zakari Mohammed (APC, Kwara) will chair Basic Education and Services Committee while Hon. Jagaba Adams Jagaba (APC, Kaduna) is to head the Committee on Interior, etc.
Conversely, ardent supporters of the House majority leader, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila (APC, Lagos), during the speakership contest such as Ali Madaki (APC, Kano) and Ahmed Rufai Chanchangi (APC, Kaduna) were left out in the headship of the House committees despite being ranking members of the House.
Some lawmakers retained the chairmanship of the committees they headed in the 7th Assembly. They include: Hon. Mohammed Tahir Monguno (APC, Borno) – Agricultural Production and Services; Hon. Aminu Suleiman (APC, Kano) – Tertiary Education; Hon. Nkiruka Onyejeocha (PDP, Abia) Aviation; Nnenna Ukeje (PDP, Abia) – Foreign Affairs; Jones Onyereri (Imo, PDP) – Banking and Currency; Shehu Shagari (Sokoto, APC) – Judiciary; Nicholas Mutu (Delta, PDP) -NDDC.
Some new members were named committee chairmen. They include Hon. Oladele Kayode (APC, Ogun) – Financial Crimes; Hon. Samuel Okon Ikon (PDP, Akwa Ibom) – Inter-parliamentary Relations; Hon. Timothy Golu (Plateau, PDP) – Legislative Budget and Research; and Hon. Abdulrazak Sa’ad Namdas (APC, Adamawa), amongst others.
Seven new committees were named: Agricultural Colleges and Institutions; Basic Education and Services; Delegated Legislation; FCT Judiciary; Health Institutions; IDPs, Refugees and Initiatives on North East; Insurance and Actuarial Matters, and Tertiary Education and Services. (Leadership)