About 1,000 pro-democracy groups in Nigeria have thrown their weight behind Hon Muktar Aliyu Betara for the position of Speaker in the 10th National Assembly.
As a sign of their support for the Borno lawmaker, the groups led by the Parliament Watch Advocates (PWA) said they will hold a rally on Tuesday, May 2 in Abuja.
According to a statement signed by PWA’s president, Ms Uju Nwachukwu, the peaceful walk will comprise key stakeholders, students, party faithful, the media, and well-meaning Nigerians.
Nwachukwu said the objective is to create more awareness of the importance of a Betara Speakership for the progress, stability, and development of the country.
The Parliament Watch Advocates president described the lawmaker representing Bayo/Shani and Kwaya Kusar Federal Constituency as an astute politician with the requisite qualities to be Speaker.
She said as a parliamentarian since 2007, Betara is highly experienced and prepared for the top job.
According to Nwachukwu, Betara’s strengths are competency, capacity, excellence, and integrity, adding that he has never failed in any assignment.
The statement further hailed the Borno lawmaker as the “most widely accepted returning member with a nationalistic posture who is popular for his selflessness”.
Nwachukwu said Betara is an uncommon achiever, bridge-builder, unifying factor, team player, detribalised leader of uncommon virtues and role model.
She added that he commands the respect of his peers and enjoys a harmonious relationship with the President and Vice president-elect, setting the path for a rancor-free administration.
“His track record of being a legislator per excellence puts him in good stead as the Federal House of Representatives Speaker,” the statement added.
“As a group, we are convinced beyond reasonable doubt that the Hon Betara indeed possesses the right temperament, experience, and composure to lead the Federal House of Representatives in a manner that would complement the efforts of the executive arm of government towards delivering the dividends of democracy to Nigerians.”
The Parliament Watch Advocates, therefore, called on other civil society organisations, patriots, and lovers of good governance to participate in the rally.
Nwachukwu said as the engine room of past leaders of the House of Representatives, Betara will hit the ground running immediately.
She added that as a Democrat and loyal party man, the House appropriation committee chairman had on a number of times shelved his ambition for others.
The statement, however, said it is the time for him to bring his extraordinary experience, exposure and leadership acumen to the fore, adding that his fresh ideas are what the country needs.
Nwachukwu assured that Betara will be the best Speaker in the history of Nigeria if given the opportunity.