By; PAMELA EBOH, Awka
Mr. Uche Okafor representing Ayamelum Constituency in Anambra North Local Government Area, Anambra State has emerged the new Speaker for the seventh Assembly.
Though expectations were high that the Speaker will emerge from another zone other than the North since the governor is also from the same zone and co considering the fact that the state is practicing a zoning process that brought in Obiano
Recall that the immediate past Speaker of the state assembly, Hon Rita Maduagwu came from the south.
Clerk of the House, Mr. Pius Udoh who swore in the new Speaker after reading the governor’s proclamation for the inauguration of the seventh assembly, directed the lawmakers to submit their assets declaration forms before the commencement of the election, which the 30-member legislature did.
Okafor was nominated by the member representing Onitsha North 11 constituency, Mr. Edward Igbuzo- and was seconded by Lawrence Ezeudu representing Dunukoofia constituency.
The member representing Ihiala 11 constituency. Pascal Agbodike was elected the deputy speaker, while Dr. Nnamdi Okafor from Awka South 1 emerged the majority leader.
In his speech after taking the oath of office, the new speaker commended his colleagues for finding him worthy to preside over the seventh assembly and promised to carry everyone along in the discharge of his duties.
He assured the people of Anambra State that the state legislature would make laws that would help to further develop Anambra State.
He also assured that the House of Assembly would ensure separation of power among the various arms of government to sustain the existing peace and harmony in the state.
Giving insight on why the position of speaker was zoned to the North, the national chairman of the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, Chief Victor Oye said that the consideration came from the fact that APGA had earlier zoned the governorship position for 2022 to Anambra South senatorial zone.
He said: “It has become expedient to issue this statement to correct the malicious and tendentious misrepresentation of facts with regards to the choice of the Speaker of the 7th session of the Anambra State House of Assembly.
“The decision to zone the speakership position to the Northern part of the state arose from the simple fact that our party had earlier zoned the governorship position in 2022 to the South.
“Again, the decision was reached after due and wide consultation with critical stakeholders and to maintain equity and justice.
“We urge our members across the various divides in the state to abide by the choices made by the party to oversee its affairs in the 7th Assembly.
He explained that with the choices the party have made, the party is well-positioned to face the challenges ahead and discharge itself creditably in line with democratic tenets, expectations of the people and the development of the state.