Adamu, Danbaba crossfire over defections in Senate



In the heat of gale of defections that hit the ruling All Progressives Congress ( APC) in the National Assembly Tuesday last week, particularly in the Senate where 14 Senators dumped the party for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) , a staunch supporter of President Muhammadu Buhari, Senator Abdullahi Adamu (APC Nasarawa West) fired missiles at the defectors, describing them as blind supporters of Senate President Bukola Saraki, who he alleged, hurriedly compiled the names to discredit the ruling party.
However, two of the defectors i.e , Senators Ibrahim Danbaba (Sokoto Central) and Hamman Isa Misau (Bauchi Central) fired back.
Taiye Odewale reports on the fireworks.
Forged list of defectors? Senator Abdullahi Adamu’s missiles against the defected Senators came via a telephone interview he granted the Blueprint Newspaper 48 hours after their defections precisely on Thursday last week.
He said: “To many of us who are members of the ruling party (APC) in the Senate, possible defection of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, from the party for reasons best known to him, along with the two other senators from Kwara State.
Of course, Senator Dino Melaye, who for several weeks back, was allowed by Saraki to change his sitting position in the hallow chamber to the side meant for members of minority parties , was a long awaited action and not the gang up form of defection that took place on Tuesday in the Senate.
“To us, aside the two Senators from Kwara State and by extension, Senator Dino Melaye from Kogi State, all other senators included in the list, were smuggled into it by Saraki to settle scores with leadership of the party or with the presidency.
“Many of those other senators included in the list particularly those from the Northern part of the country, will surely have a rethink and come back into the APC fold before the 2019 general election because their electoral fortune cannot be separated from the goodwill and popularity President Buhari enjoys among the electorate there, and a very strong factor that contributed to the 2015 electoral victories that came their way.
“As officially expected, a defector either on the floor of the Senate or that of the House of Representatives, is expected to personally write a letter to that effect to the Senate President and individually stand by it when read to the other lawmakers and not lumping names of lawmakers together on a list hurriedly compiled and announced as defectors to a particular party which was not even true going by denials and clarifications some of the alleged defectors later made few hours after”.
Is Adamu’s war with Saraki personal? On whether his antagonism against Saraki in recent time as a Buhari supporter in the Senate was part of the factors that led to the defections, the senator explained:” I have no problem with the senate president; I’m not looking for his seat but somehow he is a kind of guy who is operating by proxy, principle of proxy.
You know he has errand boys who take it upon themselves to do the hatchet man’s job.
“If there is anything that is going to happen and he feels it will be a bit hard to swallow, he will make sure he is not on the stage and he will have Ike Ekweremadu to do the dirty work for him.
“As far as I’m concerned, I don’t have anything against him.
I’m not God.
God made him President of the Senate.
Whatever the circumstances that he followed, as a Muslim I believe that it was God that made him.
It wouldn’t have been possible if God did not will it.
As a faithful, I took it to be so and till date that’s my attitude to him, and he knows it.
“However, what I do not accept is that as he always says, and as most people say when it is convenient for them, they use good reasons to do bad things.
“People talk about strengthening institutions; I love the idea but I have a terrible allergy for people using public institutions to serve themselves instead of public good.
And as long as I’m able, I will continue to protest against this.
“Today, they say I’m supporting Buhari; yes I do.
Buhari is a person who is under oath as the president of this country and I’m under oath to support the president of my country as a senator.
Yes, I can differ, but where I How possible is it for somebody to just announce the change of party on behalf of a Senator without the legislator concerned giving his consent.
We can assure him that more Senators are preparing to leave the sinking ship of the APC and Senator Adamu Abdullahi will have more fabrications to do.
differ there are attitudes that I will adopt.
I can’t reduce myself to some kind of garage boy, grandstanding in the senate.
“Like I keep saying, I didn’t inherit a political empire, I worked through the ladder to get to where I am and till tomorrow, I can answer my father’s name the same way I know everybody will be made to answer his father’s name when we get to the bridge of the 2019 elections”.
Merchant of lies But in a swift response, two out of the 14 APC Senators many of whom defected to PDP, slammed Adamu over his remarks by describing him as merchant of lies for APC.
The two Senators i.e, Ibrahim Danbaba from Sokoto Central and Hamman Isah Misau from Bauchi Central in a jointly signed statement Thursday last week, said that the former Nasarawa State governor thought all Nigerians were dumb by saying names of senators were just announced when in actual fact the concerned senators are individual political leaders in their different constituencies and were present on the floor when their names were read out from a letter signed by all of them.
The statement reads,:”People like Senator Adamu have become agents of instability and division in the Senate.
“This same Senator, who was genuflecting before Saraki to get a Senate committee chairmanship at the beginning of the 8th Senate, suddenly made a turn-around to become a lap-dog of the Presidency because he is afraid of his past.
It is public knowledge that the axe of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is dangling on him and one of his sons.
“How possible is it for somebody to just announce the change of party on behalf of a Senator without the legislator concerned giving his consent.
We can assure him that more Senators are preparing to leave the sinking ship of the APC and Senator Adamu Abdullahi will have more fabrications to do.
“It is surprising that a man of Adamu’s calibre will say that the only defecting Senators are from Kwara.
We wonder if Senators Danbaba (Sokoto), Isa Misau and Suleiman Nazif (Bauchi), Monsurat Sunmonu (Oyo), Barnabas Gemade (Benue), Ubali Shittu (Jigawa), Suleiman Hunkuyi (Kaduna), Usman Nafada (Gombe), Rabiu Kwakwanso (Kano), Abdulazeez Nyako (Adamawa), and Dino Melaye (Kogi) are also from Kwara State.
“Senator Adamu is struggling to save his skin but he should at least care about the credibility of the information he is giving out.
At his level, he should refrain from circulating fake news”.
Though the ruling party (APC), despite the defection, still commands simple majority in the Senate with 53 Senators as against PDP which has 49, ADC 3 and APGA 2, totaling 107 while the remaining two seats are vacant on account of deaths of Senator Ali Wakili (APC Bauchi South) and Bukar Mustapha (APC Katsina North) but the party may be reduced to a minority if the Saraki-led group intensifies its effort in wooing more senators to its side before resumption in September from the ongoing long recess.

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