Principal Offices: Saraki, Lawan Test Strength Again As Senate Resumes Today

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*Oyegun Fails To Reconcile Two Warring Senate Factions

The crisis of confidence among Senators over sharing of principal offices has continued to widen as Senators resume sitting on Tuesday with sustained bickering on who gets what on the remaining principal offices.

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki had two weeks ago emerged at the expense of the All Progressives Congress (APC), and against the party’s preferred candidate Senator Ahmed Lawan.

The APC had been thrown off balance by the outcome of the elections in the Senate and the House of Representatives which did not favour its candidates, Ahmed Lawan and Femi Gbajabiamila.

The party was further incensed by the emergence of a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Ike Ekweremadu as Deputy Senate President on the strength of intrigue by the Saraki group to dislodge it from power game in the Senate.

Indications that all are still not well among Senators emerged earlier in the day as a meeting of the two factions of the Senators called by the APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie Oyegun to harmonise their positions on principal offices ended in a deadlock.

Notwithstanding being on the winning side, the Like Mind senators backing the Senate President are insisting on not sharing the remaining principal offices with the Lawan Group of the Unity Forum

The Saraki Like Minds Senators are insisting that any attempt to concede a principal office to the Lawam group would amount to allowing the influence of the APC National leader Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu to fester over the party.

Tinubu who has been out of Nigeria for some days suddenly surfaced in Abuja over the weekend, prompting the APC’s leadership to find a means of pacifying the Lawan group by negotiating the principal offices for his group

A meeting of the National Working Committee of the APC scheduled to hold earlier today could not hold due to the meeting between Oyegun and the warring Senators.

The Senate President and the defeated Ahmed Lawan as well as a few of their supporters were in attendance at the meeting with Oyegun which lasted barely an hour.


Saraki’s main supporters, Senators Ahmed Sani-Yerima and Danjuma Goje had earlier hinted newsmen reason such a meeting will not resolve issues between the warring Senators, disclosing that none of the offices in contention will go to the opposition.

The APC had resolved to address the crisis of confidence among its Senators by asking the Senate leadership to concede the remaining principal offices to the Lawam group.

By that arrangement Lawan would have been allowed to emerge as the Senate Leader, while his supporters will take the remaining offices.

The principal offices expected to be filled either today or during the week include Senate Leader; Deputy Senate Leader; Senate Chief Whip; and Deputy Chief Whip.

Notwithstanding, Yerima and Goje insisted that the leadership of the Senate sit by and allow the opposition to take the offices, which they argued remained the exclusive right of the zonal caucuses in the Senate.

The two Senators insisted that since the Lawan group is believed to be loyal to Tinubu, a possible concession of more grounds to his group will amount to further empowering him at the expense of APC.

The APC had earlier categorically decried the use of zoning arrangement as a means of sharing national offices, contending that doing so would amount to towing the line of the PDP which was unhelpful to Nigeria.

The failure of the APC to take categorical position on sharing of national offices after it won the Presidential election had created a lacuna which Saraki and Yakubu Dogara exploited to cling the positions of Senate President and House of Representatives Speaker.


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