The National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has charged the new leadership of the bi-camera federal legislature to jealously guard the independent of that critical arm of government.
The main opposition party, in a congratulatory message, acknowledged the new set of the leadership of the two chambers and congratulated them for their electoral victories in the keenly contested positions.
Senator Ahmed Lawan, a fifth-time lawmaker through the two chambers, emerged the President of the Senate while Senator Ovie Omo-Agege was elected his deputy.
Lawan, who represents Yobe North senatorial district and Omo-Agege, who holds the mandate for Delta Central district, are of the governing All Progressives Congress (APC).
In the House of Representatives, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila was elected Speaker, while Mr Ahmed Idris emerged his deputy. They are also of the APC.
In a statement, Tuesday night by the spokesman for the PDP, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, the party also commended all those that made the contests robust for helping to deepen democratic practice.
The PDP said it will always stand on the side of decency and utmost respect for the institution of the National Assembly and the values we hold as a people.
The statement said, “Our party therefore charges the federal lawmakers, as representatives of the people, to place the welfare, wishes and aspirations of Nigerians above every other considerations by ensuring a strong and independent legislature that upholds the tenets of democracy and the dictates of our constitution.
“The 9th National Assembly therefore must work hard to save our nation from the prevailing despondency caused by the misrule of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, by effectively applying its statutory legislative instruments to guarantee good governance and fiscal prudence, curb corruption, check the excesses of the executive and protect the rights of Nigerians from incessant violations”.
The party charged the lawmakers to bear in mind that their allegiance is to the people and the constitution, and not to any particular leader or group.
“Our party, therefore, charges the legislature to work only in the interest of our nation and resist the manipulations and pressure that might come from quarters that seek to undermine our democratic order.
“On our part, the PDP, as a party, will remain truly committed to the welfare of Nigerians.
We shall continue to keep our focus on the quest for good governance, national cohesion and economic wellbeing of the people, even as we pursue our collective aspiration for the successful retrieval of our stolen Presidential mandate at the tribunal”, the statement added.