Lawmaker questions removal of Northern Senators Forum chairman

Senator Ali Wakili. [Photo credit: TOS TV NETWORK]
Senator Ali Wakili. [Photo credit: TOS TV NETWORK]

Members of the Northern Senators Forum never held a meeting to discuss the removal of Abdullahi Adamu as its chairman, a member of the forum, Ali Wakili, has said.

Mr. Wakili, representing Bauchi South, said he got to know about the removal from the media.

Mr. Adamu, a former governor of Nasarawa state, was removed as chairman of the forum on Wednesday.

“I was not here yesterday but I saw it over the papers and television when you announced the removal of Senator Abdullahi Adamu as the leader of the Northern Senators Forum,” Mr. Wakili told the Senate.

“Your Excellency I come from the north and I am active member of the Northern Senators Forum. At no time have we met and put to question any of the leaders of the northern senators forum,” he said.

In the letter announcing his removal, Mr. Adamu was accused of “financial mismanagement and misadministration.”

Shortly after the announcement, Shehu Sani (Kaduna-APC) who is a member of the forum, alleged that Mr. Adamu and other executive members mismanaged about N70 million belonging to the group.

Mr. Wakili said such announcement was a breach of his privilege.

“It was brought to this place and it was announced and some of our colleagues went to the press centre and made statements that referred to some of us are monkeys.

“We are taking this political brinkmanship beyond the level we are supposed to take it. We are supposed to be wise men,” he said.

“The fact that I am not privy and the fact that the northern senators forum was dragged my privilege has been breached because nobody called me for a meeting. Senator Barau Jibrin, secretary of the forum had never called a meeting. Senator Dino Melaye, the public relations officer of the forum, had never called for a meeting.

“When the announcement was made, the spokesman of the senate led some senators to the press centre to make some of these bombastic statements. By this, I want to say that my privilege has been breached because my constituents and other concerned northerners have also expressed their disgust that why are we trying to destroy our leadership. I want the senate to take judicial note of what I am saying.”

The senate’s spokesperson, Sabi Abdullahi, denied leading some senators to the press centre to make comments on the removal.

“I came a little bit late and I got the information that my good brother Malam Ali Wakili made some comments alluding to the fact that as the spokesman of this senate, I led some people to the press centre to make some comments with respect to the issue of the Northern Senators Forum. I want to make it categorically clear that as the spokesman of the senate, I’ve always tried to remain very focused on defending the institution of the senate.

“Yesterday I went to the media centre as part of my statutory responsibility to brief the senate press corps on happenings within the senate. Senator Shehu Sani and Senator Misau followed me as I normally do. They joined me and in the process, they asked him some questions and he responded. But yesterday I made it very clear that that I’m not holding brief for northern senators forum, even though I’m a member. The clips are there and if there is anyone who has anything to the contrary, I challenge him to bring that clip out,” he said.

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