FLEX: Tinubu to exert highest influence on NASS – OrderPaper

David OputahMay 25, 20244 min

The report by OrderPaper reveals that  President Tinubu has the record of transitioning the largest number of politicians from the legislature to the executive in one fell swoop.

OrderPaper Nigeria, in a report, has predicted that the Bola Tinubu administration will exert the highest influence and impact on the National Assembly in a way that either strengthens the legislature or reinforces its widely perceived rubber stamp status.

The report, a niche edition of OrderPaper’s Quarterly Policy Review (QPR) series, which focuses on the transition of politicians ‘From the Legislature to the Executive (FLEX), reveals that the character and composition of the Tinubu government are defining factors of its relationship with the National Assembly and its legacy of governance and democratic imprints after office.

The report reveals that 22 out of the 48-member federal cabinet appointees were members of the National or State Assemblies, thereby giving President Tinubu the record of transitioning the largest number of politicians from the legislature to the executive in one fell swoop.

Besides the fact that President Tinubu and Vice President Kashim Shettima are both FLEXes themselves (having both served in the Senate at various times), the President has a horde of other appointees with cognate legislative background and experience.

These include Femi Gbajabiamila, his Chief of Staff, the immediate past Speaker of the House of Representatives, and George Akume, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), who served three terms in the Senate. Instructively, both positions are perhaps the most critical statutory organs of the presidency that can facilitate the optimal delivery of the vision, goals and manifesto of the Tinubu administration.

In line with tradition, President Tinubu’s two liaison officers to the National Assembly, Abdullahi Abubakar Gumel and Ibrahim Olarewaju Kunle, who officially serve as presidential aides to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate and House of Representatives respectively), are FLEXes.

Going by these, OrderPaper, Nigeria’s foremost independent parliamentary monitoring organisation and policy think tank that bridges the gap between people and parliament, asserts that the FLEX phenomenon will play defining roles in determining President Tinubu’s legacy concerning service delivery and democratic consolidation.

In a statement, Oke Epia, Founder/Executive Director of OrderPaper Nigeria, said the FLEX report delves into critical but hitherto unexplored facets of Nigeria’s governance architecture and sheds light on the intricate dynamics between the legislature and executive branches of government, adding that the work presents a challenge to academics and research institutions, policymakers, media practitioners and public analysts, among others, to deep dive into the phenomenon in a bid to enhance governance and democracy in Nigeria.

Revealing that OrderPaper will partner with relevant stakeholders to establish FLEX as a viable performance-tracking platform, he announced that the publication can be accessed online via https://orderpaper.ng/flex/

In a foreword by Rt. Hon. Samson Osagie, the former Minority Whip of the House of Representatives, commended OrderPaper for the novel work, saying, “this publication unarguably, given its unique analytical focus, represents a unique perspective into studying and evaluating the implications of some developments in the polity that have hitherto escaped the attention of public affairs analysts and even academics.

“This is undoubtedly a commendable contribution not only to the advancement of knowledge but to the deepening of the understanding of the dynamics that characterise the growth of democratic governance in Nigeria and OrderPaper’s submission on  the populace’s huge expectations for a positive impact on governance is well placed.”

David Oputah

Oputah David M is a Bloomberg-trained Journalist with a diversified experience in online journalism and newsroom management. He is a 2023 MTN Media Innovation fellow!

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