Anti-Saraki Senetors outline conditions for peace

saraki-702x336Hopes of reconcili­ation between the different factions in the Senate caucus of the All Progres­sives Congress (APC) over the leadership crisis in the chamber waned yesterday.

Spokesperson of the Senate Unity Forum loyal to Senator Ahmad Ibrahim Lawan, Senator Kabiru Marafa yesterday asked Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki to reverse the appointment of Senate Leader Ali Ndume and his deputy, Bala Ibn Na’Allah.

Shortly before going on recess last month, the Senate President announced the appointment of Ndume and Na’Allah as the choice of the Northeast and Northwest caucuses for the positions respectively.

But the Senate Unity Forum has kicked against the appointments, insisting that Ndume and Na’Allah’s appointments violated Rule 3 (2) of the Senate Standing Order which clearly stipulates ranking in the chamber.

The Forum reiterated that both men are not qualified to hold office by effect of the ranking rule and also insisted that the rules used to inaugurate the Eighth Senate were forged.

Marafa said: “Can we continue to operate the highest legislative chamber of the land using forged standing orders and violate the provisions of even the forged one? When did Nigeria descend this low?

“They violated rule 3 (2) to appoint both Ndume and Na’Allah as Senate Leader and deputy leader…I swear to God, we will not allow this impunity to stand!

“By the way, has anybody asked Saraki who constituted these caucuses they are talking about? Who is the chairman or leader of the Northwest caucus for example? Who is the secretary? If there is, who appointed or elected them, where, and using which law?”

The Unity Forum equally queried why the Senate President read names sent to him by the caucuses and ignored that sent to him by the APC.

“We all know political parties, their leadership and how the leardership emerged, we know the supremacy of the political party as enshrined in section 65 (2) (b). We want to know where the supremacy of any caucus is enshrined”, he further queried.

Marafa urged the Senate President to abide by Order One of the Senate Standing Orders and threatened that, upon resumption of plenary on July 28, he may be compelled to abide by that order.

Order One, which deals with the general rules for conduct of business in the Senate reads: “The proceedings in the Senate and in all committees of the Senate shall be conducted in accordance with the following standing orders… (b) In all cases not provided for hereinafter, or by sessional or other Orders or practice of the Senate, the Senate shall by Resolution regulate its own procedure.”

Marafa said: “It could be they want the stalemate in the Eighth Senate to continue looking at how they are running the place. They better shut it permanently than to reconvene and attempt to run it without respecting the rules. “The Senate President should please, read order one…He is being misled because Nigeria has never been this bad…”

Addressing Saraki directly, Marafa continued: “We will force you, on resumption, to read order one and proceed by its provision unless you want to reduce the red chamber to a jungle where everybody will do what he or she likes to do and nobody can call anybody to order. “Sir, you are the custodian and greatest beneciary of the content of that red book; if you choose to, violate it… We will help you to bring yourself down Insha Allah.

“Finally, I want ask, where are all the good people of this country? Where is our own Chief Olusegun Obasanjo? Where is Chief Emeka Anyaoku, Col Umar Dangiwa, Prof. Wole Soyinka, my friend, Femi Falana, Yadudu, Chief Audu Ogbeh… Won’t they talk before it gets messier?”

Marafa contended that all the Unity Forum wants the Senate President to do is to obey the rules and the party. Senate is expected to resume in plenary on July 28. -The Sun

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