Fred Itua, Abuja
President Muhammadu Buhari and the leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), have been cautioned against subjecting the control of the National Assembly to certain individuals.
A cross section of senators and senators-elect said the adoption of Ahmad Lawan, as consensus candidate by APC leadership was a plot to hand over the parliament to certain individuals.
Senators who had shown interest in the senate plum office include Abubakar Goje, Adamu Abdullahi and Ali Ndume.
But National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole, at a dinner for senators-elect in Abuja on Monday, announced Lawan as the preferred candidate of the party for the Senate presidency.
In spite of opposition, the ruling party has maintained that the endorsement of Lawan is a done deal and non-negotiable.
In fact, it is also being speculated that the party had also endorsed Femi Gbajabiamila for the Speakership position.
One of the senators, Enyinnaya Abaribe, said the parliament will not sit back and allow anyone impose presiding officers. He insisted that only elected senators, who are duly certified, would vote when the time comes.
“You don’t choose for us or determine for us who becomes what in the Senate. The reason why you have our type of democracy is so that one arm can be a check on another arm, otherwise, we might as well all go home and now let the Executive be everything, including making laws for us.
“So, our independence is hard-earned and lessons have been learnt, including what we went through in the last four years under this first term of the APC government. I do not think the APC government will also want to have the rancour that they went through in the last four years because if you, yourself, under such self-inflicted rancour, you are not going to get any work done. If you are unable to do that, what are you going to tell the Nigerian people?
“I don’t think Buhari’s legacy should be that he fought the National Assembly for eight years. History will not be kind. No matter what they say, the verdict of history is always very necessary for any man who claims to be a statesman and I don’t think that the APC should let their national chairman continue to be as small minded as he is,” Abaribe said.
An APC senator who did not want to be named described Lawan and Gbajabiamila as candidates of Asiwaju Bola Tunubu.
“If they have thier ways, it means Tinubu has extended his hold to the parliament. Already, he has the vice president and the national chairman. What else is left for others?”
He added: “People are just keeping quiet because of their respect for Buhari who believes that it’s pay back time for Tinubu. It’s shouldn’t be so at all because other people contributed and they should be rewarded, accordingly.”
Another lawmaker from the North said the quest by some APC leaders to conquer the National Assembly was simply to lay the foundation for their 2023 presidential ambitions.
However, former Senate Leader, Ali Ndume has vowed not to step down for Lawan.