After surprisingly being elected the Senate president, Bukola Saraki has started initiating peace moves with his colleagues and the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who are opposed to his victory.
This was disclosed to The Punch on June 14, Sunday in Abuja, by Rafiu Ibrahim, a senator loyal to Saraki.
“ We are currently meeting with our colleagues in the Senate.
Apart from the fact that the Senate President has been meeting with those who are aggrieved, we, members of the Like Minds Senators are also engaging them on one- on-one basis.
“We are also meeting with our party leadership and I think the peace moves are achieving good result. It is in the interest of everybody that we have a united Senate ,” Ibrahim said.
According to the report, the leadership of the
APC has decided to soft-pedal on its initial opposition to the outcomes of the National Assembly leadership elections so as to prevent its lawmakers from rebelling.
Members of the Senate Unity Forum who are loyal to the preferred candidate of the APC, Senator Ahmed Lawan, confirmed that Saraki
had started reaching out to them.
Some of the senators spoke on condition of anonymity because the leadership of their party had barred them from granting
interviews on the issue
A ranking senator from one of the South West states said: “ It is true that the Like Minds Senators have been talking with us to support the leadership of Saraki but we told them that we are not having any personal issues with the Senate president and his deputy, Ekweremadu.
“We are upholding the sanctity of our political party and its leadership. We have told them our conditions for mutual relationship and cooperation. It is left for them to take appropriate actions .”
As revealed by the group’s spokesperson, Senator Kabiru Marafa, the conditions for peace include the immediate resignation of Ekweremadu and an investigation of the clerk of the National Assembly, Salisu Maikasuwa, over the part he played in the June 9 Senate inauguration.
Also speaking, another senator from the South West explained that the SUF members would meet this week to review the reply of their party’s leadership to their conditions.
Saraki, a former Kwara state governor, defeated Lawan, the choice of the APC, to clinch the Senate president post while Yakubu Dogara defeated Femi Gbajabiamila for the post of the speaker of the House of Representatives. The APC had earlier vowed to sanction both men for going against the party.
However, On June 12, Friday, the national chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun said the party had accepted Saraki as the president of the Senate , and they were ready to live with the reality.
APC is reportedly in full majority in the house.