A senator has called for the resignation of Senate President Bukola Saraki and House Speaker Yakubu Dogara from the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Abu Ibrahim (APC, Katsina South), chairman of the Senate Committee on Police Affairs, on Wednesday asked the duo to resign from the party following the mass defection of some APC lawmakers to other parties.
Two days ago, 14 senators dumped the APC with majority joining the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Thirty-six members of the House of Representatives decamped from the APC as well.
Mr Ibrahim, thereafter, threatened to meet with the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole and other stakeholders to immediately have them (Messrs Saraki and Dogara) sacked should they refuse to resign.
He also accused the presiding officers of planning to commence the impeachment process of President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday, saying Messrs Saraki and Dogara could no longer be trusted in the fold of APC members.
“I know that those who take Saraki like god will go. This is because wherever Saraki goes they will go. But the mistake they have made is to realise that politics is local.
“Nobody will say Isa Misau and Suleiman Nazif (two Bauchi State senators) were voted because of Saraki. They were voted because of Buhari. They will lose their seats. Saraki will not save them. They can’t even go to their constituencies.
“Saraki and Dogara should resign today or the APC should send them away. They are no longer APC members. The only reason why Saraki and Dogara have not left the APC is that they know that if they leave they will lose their seats.
“But we will force them to leave. Left to me, I will recommend to APC to expel them. They are no longer needed in the party. We will be cured of cancer if they leave. “Me as Abu Ibrahim, I am asking Saraki and Dogara to leave APC today,” he said.
When contacted, a spokesperson to Mr Saraki, Yusuf Olaniyonu, told PREMIUM TIMES that by his professional ethics and the office he occupies, he does not respond to senators out of respect for them “because they are colleagues to his boss.”
He, however, referred this reporter to a statement by Rafiu Ibrahim (PDP, Kwara North) in response to Mr Abu Ibrahim’s claims.
“A senator has already responded. Rafiu Ibrahim. I have his authority to relay the message to others. He said ‘Abu Ibrahim saw that the coup they plotted against democracy on Monday night to Tuesday morning did not succeed, so they thought they could wish it.’
“He said ‘if they plotted to remove the Senate president and it did not happen, they thought by saying or wishing it, it will happen’.”
Rafiu Ibrahim, who confirmed Mr Olaniyonu’s statement via telephone, told PREMIUM TIMES that they (the APC caucus of the senate) had planned to impeach Mr Saraki on Tuesday.
“You can see that what they planned on Tuesday was stopped by the benevolence of Almighty Allah. They were the ones planning to impeach the Senate President, that’s why the police laid siege on both residences of the senate president and the deputy senate president on the same day. And then in the Senate, we had an unusual early appearances of people that call themselves pro-Buhari including Abu Ibrahim, Abdullahi Adamu, Omo-Agege and others.
“But they can’t call them (Saraki and Dogara) to resign, they can only try. They said they have majority, they can use all what they have to get the number to get them impeached then let’s see how it goes,” he said.
He further expressed disappointment at the government’s failure to fulfill the promises it made.
“All the promises we made together, we noticed were not being actualised. In fact not being pursued. Whenever you try to advice or try to correct what is not being done right, they tag you as anti-Buhari.
“Now that they have failed, they can continue to talk about impeaching the president. We are not interested in that. We are not going to attempt that, I can assure you. We are going to be at the other side in the upcoming election.
Mr Ibrahim added that Mr Saraki has been an exemplary leader who has had many achievements.
“He’s my mentor and leader and I’m proud to be associated with him and we will not lose our seats. We will always win elections. People voted us for us and not for Buhari,” he said.
A spokesperson for Mr Dogara asked to be given time to respond to Mr Abu Ibrahim’s remarks. He did not get back or return calls made to his phone about two hours later.