The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, has stated that the Legislature and the Executive are not rivals but partners in progress.
Mr. Dogara stated this when he received the new Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, in his office on Monday.
He described the appointment of Mr. Mustapha as “a round peg in a round hole, or a square peg in a square hole.”
He said the visit to the National Assembly by the new SGF is unprecedented in the history of the parliament.
“It’s never been done,” he said
He added that “In those days it was invitations extended to them, then a discussion whether they’ll appear at all would ensue. In some cases, some members of the Executive would go to to court on the basis of legislative summons.”
Mr. Dogara assured the SGF of the desire of the parliament to work with the Executive in order to ensure good governance.
“As a matter of fact for us, there really is no distinction in government, it’s just ignorant people who tend to make these distinctions.”
” If the Executive fails, there’s no way the Legislature would be exonerated, we are all guilty.”
“I’ve always been mindful of our place in history, that is why we have organised this House with the leaders that you see here and some of the members of the House of Representatives to always work on the policies and programmes of government with little or no resistance, bearing in mind that if we succeed, we succeed together and if we don’t succeed history would say, you’re a Speaker, you’re a leader and a member of parliament when this government failed.”
While responding, Mr. Mustapha thanked the leadership of the House of Representatives for standing with the government of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“I bring you the warm greetings of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and to also extend his thanks to your leadership in the House of Representatives for the level of progress that has been achieved thus far in the area of the primary responsibility.”
He acknowledged that without the support extended by the Speaker to the President, “the modest efforts that have been achieved would not have been achieved to date. So I want to particularly thank you with your leadership for maintaining stability in the body polity and for also ensuring that whenever there is a call to duty, you attend to the matters of state expeditiously.”
Mr. Mustapha said the executive and the legislature are”joint owners of this enterprise”.
He further acknowledged the huge role played by legislators in the 2015 election and said: “We went around this country with most of you, campaigning to ensure that we win elections and it behoves on us to ensure that in the implementation of government policies, that we take steps that will provide for the well being of our people.”
Earlier on Monday, Mr. Mustapha paid a courtesy visit to the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, and leadership of the Senate to solicit the support of the Senate in delivering the campaign promises of President Muhammadu Buhari.