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Senate Presidency Lawan’s Men Regroup, Begin Consultation

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Ahead of the inauguration of the 9th National Assembly members, a group working hard to ensure that the present Senate Leader and senator-elect for Yobe North, Ahmed Lawan, becomes the president of the upper house and chairman of the National Assembly has emerged.

LEADERSHIP Sunday reports that the cluster group, which has members cut across various political parties, has begun consultations amongst the senators-elect, party officials and other stakeholders.

The group, which had mapped out plans on how it would relate with the executive and the judiciary arms of government if it emerged winner, disclosed that even though it believed in party supremacy, the APC, which has majority among the senators-elect, would not allow what happened in 2015 to happen again.

 

APC won a commanding majority in the 9th Senate that will be inaugurated on June 9, 2019 and the battle for who becomes the chairman of the Senate president and the speaker of the House of Representatives is gathering momentum.

 

The cluster group consulting for Ahmed Lawan has people like Hassan Ibrahim Hadeija (APC, Jigawa North East), Ahmad Kaita (APC Katsina  North), Abdullahi Kabir (APC Katsina Central), Mandiya Bello (APC Katsina South), Ifeanyi Ubah (YPP, Anambra South), Abdullahi Aliyu Sabi (APC Niger North), Folarin Teslim Kolawole (APC, Oyo Central), Abubakar D. Ali (APC Yobe), Ahmed Lawan (APC Yobe North),  Mohammed Sani Musa (APC, Niger East), Bamidele Michael Opeyemi (APC Ekiti Central), Alimikhena

Francis Asekhame (APC, Edo North), Muhammed Isa,  and Abdullahi Gumel amongst others.

LEADERSHIP Sunday learnt that the group was ready to abide by the eventual decision of their party on zoning.

 

“I am a party man. I will respect the decision of the party,” Senator  Lawan said when asked what would be his reaction if the party decides to zone the office to a different region.

“We need the cooperation and support of other groups. I always believe that if we should work with the executive well, first, we must have unity.”

Lawan, who highlighted some of his plans if he emerges Senate president, said the secret of success was to carry everyone along.

 

“We have to have a bipartisan chamber. Generally, we will be senators of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and when we legislate, we legislate for the entire country. I have been in opposition from 1999 until 2015. Will there be any legislator who will oppose the enhancement of our security personnel to do better?

“We will work to ensure we attain the desired equity and fairness. I am sure that once we unite around national interest, we will contribute to national governance better,” Lawan, who will be the most ranked legislator in the 9th Assembly, said.

 

According to him, collaboration between  the two arms of government would benefit Nigerians more in the next four years.

He said, “Even though the constitution defined separation of powers, it does not amount to the independence of the arm of governments. The executive and legislature must work to ensure that we achieve a common purpose. By the way, who said we will never disagree with the executive? By design, we are meant to disagree. But when we disagree, we must sit down and look at issues and take decisions in national interest,” Lawan said.

 

The current Senate leader added that he was putting himself forward for the Senate top job after consulting with his colleagues from various political parties.

“What we are doing at the moment is to reach out to our colleagues and tell them why we are campaigning – to make the National Assembly more productive.

“We are senators who believe in the leadership of our party. But the leadership we are seeking is that of the Senate and the National Assembly. We believe the crop of senators elected this time will unite and focus on issues and make Nigeria experience rapid development,.

“We won’t have crisis. The APC must have learnt its lesson and, therefore, the leadership of the party will do something differently.

 

I have no doubt, the party will find us worthy under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“If we emerge, we will ensure the revamping of the economy that will provide all inclusive growth. Majority of Nigerians that voted for the APC are in the villages and hamlets. We must bring sustained programmes that will make life reasonable. I will want to see some reforms in the social reinvestment programme. So much rice is produced in Kebbi and Ebonyi. We will support the executive to address the concern of security  even though so much has been achieved. We want to see a situation where the security of the country is reformed. It’s not only about giving money to the armed forces, but we will legislate where the armed forces feel they need intervention. We will always be there for them,” Lawan added.

 

The lawmaker advocated a special  court to try corruption cases,   pointing out most of the ills Nigerians are suffering today is as a result of the theft of  public funds.

“Funds meant to secure the lives of Nigerians  have been stolen. When you contain the excesses, we can make laws to make it difficult for people to embezzle. Why can’t we have anti-corruption court to ensure that whoever violates the laws on corruption is prosecuted promptly? We should have specialised courts  to support the fight against corruption in Nigeria. This is the 21st century. We can make laws that will ensure that  fresh graduates contribute meaningfully to the economy,“ he  added.

 

 

 

 


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