1st anniversary: President Tinubu, NASS relationship mutually beneficial – Speaker Abbas

The Speaker of the House of Representatives Rt. Hon. Abbas Tajudeen, Ph.D, has commended President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, GCFR, for the cordial relationship between the executive and legislative arms of the Federal Government, saying it is good for democracy.

Speaker Abbas, while giving the votes of thanks at a special joint session of the Senate and the House at the National Assembly on Wednesday, said the federal parliament was happy with President Tinubu on his performance so far.

The Speaker said: “Mine is just to say a big thank you to our dear leader, who has been very supportive of the National Assembly over the last one year. A true democrat who has seen it all; a former governor, a former senator, a leader of a party and now president. I want you to know, Your Excellency, that we in the National Assembly are delighted with your report card - with your performance.

“The National Assembly is genuinely thankful for the partnership that has existed within the last one year between you and us. It has been a partnership that has been mutually beneficial to all of us. It is a win-win, and that is how democracy is supposed to be played.”

The National Assembly, which usually convenes a joint sitting to receive an appropriation bill from a sitting president or his representative, had at a historic sitting, received President Tinubu in the chambers to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the return of democracy in Nigeria and the first year anniversary of the current administration.

The event was also the first official engagement that President Tinubu and the National Assembly would recite the newly reinstated national anthem, ‘Nigeria We Hail Thee’.

The President had earlier in the day assented to the bill passed by the National Assembly to suspend the second national anthem, ‘Arise O' Compatriots’, and revert the country to the first that was introduced at independence in the First Republic.

Speaking before the President’s arrival at the chambers, Speaker Abbas had announced the postponement of the activities scheduled for the celebration.

The Speaker said: “It is a great pleasure to have you here at this emergency joint sitting to receive Mr. President primarily to flag off the new national anthem.

“June 12 is supposed to be the real Demoracy Day, not May 29; and it was an error from us; and Mr President has acknowledged our shortcomings in that regard, and has advised that whatever ceremony we are going to have, whatever speeches we will have, should be reserved. That (June 12) will be the day that we will all convene to actually celebrate democracy.

“So, Honourable colleagues and distinguished senators, forgive us for this lapse. Insha Allah, by June 12, all that we have to say about our 25 years of unbroken democracy would come to pass.”