Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The Senator representing Kano South senatorial district, Kabiru Gaya, has frowned at the leadership crisis rocking the All Progressives Congress (APC), warning the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) of the consequences of losing many party members.
Reacting to how the present brouhaha within the party could be resolved, he urged the leaders of the party during a parley with newsmen in Abuja to eschew the temptation of being dictators and bosses, appealing for a roundtable dialogue for lasting peace.
“What I want is to have is peace. There is no way that a political party won’t have problems here and there but this is too much. It’s affecting us; it is making us lose states; it is making us lose members of the National Assembly to the opposition; it is making us lose members of the state Assembly and even governorship seats.
“It’s not in the interest of the party. We are far less than what we were before. The last time we had elections, we were better than what we are now. So it’s a minus. That is why some people like Odigie Oyegun must speak.
“It is not good for us to continue like this. People must understand this. If you are a leader, you just do your best. Be a leader, not a dictator, be a leader, not a boss, be a leader who accommodates people. That is what leadership is about. As a leader, you have to face many problems. But being given a position to handle, God has equipped you to solve those problems. And when you become a leader, make more friends not enemies.
“We all came together as a team but now we are divided. Someone who is a very close friend of the leadership is now in court and now filed suit against the leadership. We should look inward and say what are the problems of the leadership of the party.
“Let them come together and resolve our problems. Everybody is fighting for the interests and progress of APC. We want the interest of the president. We want him to run a good and sound government. That is the essence of the team working together. I believe we should all work together in the interest of Nigeria and for the interest of our party,” he appealed.
Meanwhile, as the battle for the leadership of the National Assembly gathers momentum ahead of the June 11, 2019, inauguration date, Gaya has boasted that he is the best person for the position of Deputy Senate President.
The senator argued that the north-west zone with 17 senators having given the party about six million votes which could not be easily be wished away, is better positioned to occupy the seat in the 9th Senate.
While insisting that the South-South and the South-East should be accommodated in the other leadership positions, Gaya said: “My reasons for saying nobody should produce the deputy senate president rather than the North West is because we produced six million votes and in this kind of politics, you don’t wish away an area where you are strong.
“You will have to consolidate the party because this last election was made possible because of Buhari and Kano factors. What we are saying is that, because of that, quite a number of what we had, Kano alone produced 1.4 million and we have 6 million registered voters.
“So, what we are saying is that if we could give the speaker to the South West, I can see no reason why we can’t get Deputy Senate President in the North. If we are saying we have the president, fine, South has the Vice President and I believe it is better we consolidate on our positions now. Then, that will attract even the other two zones to also work hard for the APC because I know that President Buhari did a lot in all these states,” he argued.
On how other zones should be accommodated as principal officers of the 9th Senate, the four-time senator, said: “You know we need the South East, we need the South-South and the remaining four zones.
“You see there are other positions like Senate Leader which is also a very important position, we have Chief Whip which is also important because if you give all other zones positions, and you deny North West which has the highest number of votes – six million votes – that would not be good. What it means is that you want to throw away 6 million votes.
“I’m saying we need the South East, we need South-South. But you cannot throw away where you have 20 senators. Although with the present record, we now have 17 senators, which is unfortunate, you cannot give the Deputy Senate President to where you have only two senators,” he argued.