OrderPaperToday – The senator-elect for Benue North-West senatorial district, Mr. Emmanuel Oker-Jev, has expressed confidence in the crop of lawmakers from Benue State recently elected in the 2019 general election and awaiting to be sworn in.
He also noted that the 8th House of Representatives under the leadership of Speaker Yakubu Dogara has performed exceedingly well despite the executive truancy.
Speaking exclusively to OrderPaperNG on Tuesday during the valedictory session of the 8th National Assembly, the third term House of Representatives member said Dogara displayed maturity and calmness in the discharge of his duty.
“My advice for the incoming member who is going to be replacing me here, Kpam Jimin Jokpo, in the House of Representatives is that he must not deviate from the promises he has made to constituents. Though, I am confident he is going to deliver because I have worked closely with him and he has shown enthusiasm in continuing from where I stopped.
“Mind you he is a young gentle man and very energetic. Same applies to the other Benue lawmakers who are coming into the House. They are all young breeds whom have excelled in their different fields work. I believe they would definitely surpass our expectations but I urge them all to be steadfast and of course focus. I’m available in case any of them need my good counsel and I believe we can all move Benue and Nigeria forward if we work together irrespective of party affiliation”.
“As for the performance of 8th assembly, I must say the outgoing Speaker, Yakubu Dogara has performed excellently well and his maturity in handling issues that arose in the course of leadership further helped in stabilizing the House. I want to say that under his leadership the House was able to pass several bills and motions that of course would be of benefit to Nigerians.
“However, I think a lot more could have been achieved if there existed a cordial relationship between the legislature and the executive. A situation where the executive see themselves as superior to the legislature is unacceptable and not healthy for our democracy”.
He continued: ” I also pray the mistake of the 8th assembly in the election of who becomes what does not repeat itself because that contributed immensely to the rocky relationship between the legislature and the executive. I urge all contestants to take things easy and whoever emerges should be given all the support by others.”
When asked whether he had any candidates in mind amongst those contesting for speaker and senate president respectively, he said, “no particular person yet but by Monday I would decide”
Mr. Oker-Jev represented Buruku federal constituency for 12 years in the House of Representatives but in 2019 he contested for the senate on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) against his supposed godfather, senator Gorge Akume of the All Progressives Congress (APC). He won the election against all odds.
Before joining politics in 2007, he was a practicing lawyer in Gboko, Benue State.