From Fred Itua, Abuja
SENATE may soon erupt in fresh crisis following an agreement between loyalists of Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki and Senator Ahmad Lawan to reshuffle the chamber’s 64 standing committees.
The new agreement was reached last Tuesday, at a meeting held at the instance of the former governor of Sokoto state, Senator Aliyu Wammako. The meeting was held between lawmakers of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who belong to the Senate Unity Forum and the Like Minds.
Senator Kabiru Marafa, who spoke to Daily Sun, said the two factions agreed on a three-point agenda, one of which was to redistribute chairmanship of the 64 standing committees in order to compensate aggrieved APC members.
Marafa said: “Number two agreement of the meeting was that APC members, especially the Unity Forum elements, who were marginalized in the formation of the committees, be accommodated. That was because we contested, but, they won. We lost and we had no reason to complain. If you are asking us to come together, we can ask you for fairness. Our members in the Unity Forum were sidelined.
“Number one item on the list was agreed upon. We agreed that we will amend the rules to accommodate all committees of the Senate. Number two on the agenda was also agreed upon. That is the issue of committees, with a view to giving the committees what they deserve. We are continuing with number three and that is how the Senate can comply with the directive of the party.”
But the move may not go well with Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who have been seen as the power base behind the Senate President since his perjury trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) started.
Speaking with Daily Sun, Senate spokesman, Abdullahi Sabi said he would not make any comments about the agreement reached between the two factions since he is not a member of any of the two groups.
Senator Sabi said even as the spokesman of the Senate, he could not also comment on the execution of the agreement reached between loyalists of Saraki and Lawan on the reshuffle of committees.
Sabi said: “Remember, Senator Marafa said the meeting had nothing to do with the Senate President. For me, the issue is simple. I was not part of the team and I was not there. So, I speak on behalf of the Senate, as an institution. I do not think I can make any comments on that.
“It is better for you to talk to those who attended the meeting and who reached the agreement. They are in a better position to make any comments. I speak for the Senate and within this context, I do not think I am in a position to speak. Talk to the participants from the Unity Forum and the Like Minds.”