ADEKUNLE ADESUJI, Abuja
Former Senate leader, Mohammed Ndume, has faulted imposition of Senator Ahmad Lawan by the National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC) as preferred candidate for the Senate President seat in the Ninth Senate.
Oshiomole had on Monday night recommended Senator Lawan as the preferred candidate for the Senate President seat in a meeting held at the Villa while President Muhammad Buhari was in attendance.
However, addressing newsmen on Tuesday, Ndume faulted the decision of the National leadership of the party on Lawan, describing the endorsement as unconstitutional.
Ndume added that such endorsements run contrary to provisions of section 50(1A) of the 1999 constitution as amended.The section states “There shall be a President and Deputy President of the Senate who shall be elected by the members of that house from among themselves “.
According to him, by provisions of the Constitution, neither Oshiomhole nor President Muhammadu Buhari or even any party leader, has the right to force on elected senators or Honourable members of the House of Representatives, their presiding officers.
“What took place at the presidential dinner in Aso rock on Monday night where Oshiomhole as party chairman , announced Senator Ahmed Lawan and Hon Femi Gbajabiamila as President of the 9th Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives respectively was very shocking to me and many of my colleagues .
” Oshiomhole in making the announcement or endorsement, did not even allow myself or Senators Danjuma Goje ( Gombe Central) and Abdullahi Adamu ( Nasarawa west), widely known to be in the race for the position to say anything .
More disturbing was the fact that even Senator Ahmed Lawan endorsed for the position , was not allowed to make any comment in form of acceptance speech or soliciting for supports from other interested senators “, he said .He said that the ruling is expected to have learnt her lessons from the 2015 experience , is being made to thread the similar path of boomerang by Adams Oshiomhole.
According to him, since 1999, there was no time leadership was imposed on any of the chambers of the National Assembly without such imposition boomeranging.
” Under PDP , it happened with the imposition of Evans Enwerem and Adolphus Wabara as Senate President at different times and also with Etteh as Speaker of the House of Representatives in 2007 before the party eventually got it right in the 6th and 7th National Assembly , particularly in the Senate when Senator David Mark served twice as President of the Senate through supports in form of votes given to him by fellow senators and not endorsement by party chairman .
“For the sake of cohesion and stability among party members as regards aspirations for such positions, what was expected from the party leadership , was to just zone the positions and allow contenders within each of the zones to sort it out either through consensus or shadow election .
“The 109 Elected Senators and 360 House of Representatives members are the constitutional kingmakers as far as emergence of presiding officers of both chambers are concerned and not national chairman of a ruling party or even the President “, he said.
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