By Emman Ovuakporie
ABUJA-JOHN Chike Okafor representing Ehime Mbani/ Ihite/ Obowo Federal Constituency of Imo State, yesterday, declared his intention to run for the office of the speaker of the House of Representatives.
“I formally wrote my party chairman, last Thursday, that I am ready to contest in the race,” he told reporters, in Abuja, adding that he is very ready to run for the House of Representatives top position and so far the South East has not been given a fair deal.
Okafor explained that “in 2015, I wanted to run for the same office but I was politely informed that I was not a ranking member and here I am again in 2019. I have done the right thing by writing the chairman of my intention to run because I know I am eminently qualified to pilot the affairs of the Ninth House. As a former senior bank manager and commissioner of Finance, I strongly believe that running this House won’t be an issue.”
On why the South East must produce the next speaker, Okafor said: “In 2015, the APC polled over 198, 000 votes in the South-East while in 2019, it polled over 403,000 votes. This is a remarkable improvement from what transpired in 2015 and APC is a government of the future so it must embrace inclusivity and give South-East a sense of belonging.”
Meanwhile, the Arewa Good Governance and Transparency Initiative For Buhari has endorsed Okafor for the speakership, describing him as the most credible candidate to mount House leadership saddle in June.
While endorsing the legislator, President of the group, Abdul Bashir Abubakar thanked Okafor for accepting to protect the interest of all Nigerians in the Green Chamber, if elected.