Idibia Gabriel in Kaduna, reports on the weekend support canvassed by Arewa Youths Council and 12 State Chairmen of the All Progressives Congress, APC, for the embattled Senate President, Bukola Saraki.
Few hours after 12 Chairmen of the All Progressives Congress, APC, paid a courtesy visit to Senate President, Bukola Saraki, declaring support for him, the Arewa Youth Development Association (AYDA) in conjunction with 11other progressive youth organizations yesterday vowed that it will resist any attempt to frustrate Saraki led Senate by any member of the National Assembly or leadership of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) party. During their visit, the council Chairmen, who gad earlier joined a national meeting of their colleagues from across the country on a courtesy visit to President Buhari, pledged their support for Saraki, who had been consulting with the stakeholders in a bid to restore sanity in the Senate before resumption of plenary.
Remarkably, it was the leader of the delegation to visit the President and Chairman of the APC in Kano State, Umar Dogowa, that led the same delegation to visit Saraki. Dogowa who said that the APC State Chairmen were on a visit to the Presidential Villa to reaffirm their support for President Buhari and his administration, said exactly the same message to Saraki.
According to the national president of the Arewa association, Alh. Imrana Wada Nas, the crisis in the Senate following Saraki’s emergence must be resolved by the party leaders for peace to rein in the country, disturbed, as the association sees it, by the lingering crisis in the National Assembly and the party. who made the remark at a press conference held in Kaduna on Sunday said “We have observed with keen interest and dismay the unveiling plans by some groups of politicians who are bent on destabilizing and creating a state of disorder in National Assembly”.
Wada said they have also discovered that same group of persons have refused to give peace a chance by not allowing elected officers settle down for their primary duties as lawmakers even when the elections that produced the leaders of both Senate and House of Representatives have been adjudged free , fair and credible. The president said they equally gathered from reliable sources that all efforts made by various party members and stakeholders to prevail over aggrieved party leaders that are against the emergence of Senator Bukola Saraki as the Senate President of the 8th National Assembly have failed to yield positive result.
He said as concerned northern based socio-political pressure group with membership ,which cut across the 19 northern states of Nigeria, they strongly believe it would be an absolute disservice to “our fatherland to keep quite and allow these few selfish and ambitious individuals take over the National Assembly just because they fielded leaders and officers that were rejected by elected National Assembly member.”
According to group, their support for Senator Saraki goes beyond geographical location, ethnicity or religion. “Majority of Nigerians clamoured and voted in the 2015 election that brought President Buhari to power , so the likes of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu should not hold us to ransom just because he didn’t succeed in imposing his preferred candidates in the Senate and House of Representatives. We have high regard for Tinubu , especially for the invaluable contribution to the APC merger and success of the party during the 2015 elections . This is why we are advising him to accept Senator Saraki as elected Senate President.
More so, to rather join hands with him to ensure smooth relationship between the executive and legislatures. But if he and other angry members insist on frustrating Saraki , we will not hesitate as a group to respond appropiately. We are fully prepared to use all available means within the law to ensure that Senate Saraki remains the Senate President”, they threatened. The also said “We, and very large number of APC supporters, as well as the masses voted for Change so any attempt to disrupt the existence peace , we would fight back . All we are telling the party leaders and other aggrieved members is to allow Nigerians enjoy the good governance and concrete dividends of democracy.
Enough of imposition of candidates political godfathers” . According to the youth group the development is wrong, retrogressive and bad for the evolving democracy. “It is against this background that we have come out strongly to express our unalloyed support for the former governor of Kwara State, Senator Bukola Saraki , who was duly elected as the Senate President by the required two third majority members of the senate. Our reasons for supporting Senator Saraki is to ensure fairness, and for the purpose of balance and to allow the duly and newly elected Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki to remain as elected”.
They continued that “Of course , we are not unaware that the All Progres sives Congress , APC is a party formed through a merger process and so , we also feel it is only fair that after President Muhammadu Buhari from the defunct CPC background is the President , Professor Yemi Osinbajo from the ACN party is the Vice President , then someone from People’s Democratic Party should be given a chance . If this factor was initially considered by the so called party leaders, who are now crying fowl and insisting on their anointed candidates , there should no basis for the current crisis rocking APC over Saraki emergence”.
Accordingly, they advised those mounting pressure from both within APC and outside to stop over heating the polity over an issue that has been settled on floor of the Senate. “We all watched on television how the election the brought Senator Saraki was conducted transparently without any rancour.
We are just wondering what could have informed the rejection of Senator Saraki after the election . If the Senators agree to vote him as their leader, the aggrieved members should accept him without further disagreement”. Further more “It is true that some aggrieved Senators claimed they were disenfranchised and so kicked against Senator Saraki’s emergence, but we stand to disagree with them .
We can tell you authoritatively that if all members of senate were on ground , Senator Saraki would still win landslide. And for your information, if another election is conducted today, Saraki would still win” , adding that “If this is case, why not these APC leaders should allow peace to reign so that when the Senate converge after the recess , they can face the duty of law making, which they were elected for .
We stand by Senator Saraki not because he is a northerner, but we are doing so as a group of responsible Nigerians who believe in the unity, progress and development of this country” . The reminded that the Senator Saraki they “are working to pull down today did sacrifice his presidential ambition for President Buhari , whom he has confidence in, respects and trust .
And he , Senator Saraki has already allayed anticipated fears of being used to frustrate President Buhari and promised to work closely with him to ensure that Nigerians feel the impact of the change they voted for . So there should be no cause for alarm”, and thus called on the aggrieved APC leaders and members to sheath their swords and allow peace to reign.