As the Cold War between the presidency and the Senate President, Dr. Abubakar Saraki over the later’s emergence as the Senate President rages on, a good number of the Senators have allegedly rejected heading Committees to avoid what they described as witch-hunt.
The tradition before now was that Senators and members of the House of Representatives lobby to become Chairmen of some of the Committees perceived to be juicy so as to better their lots.
Vanguard Newspaper is reporting that some of the Senators especially those from the All Progressives Congress, APC, who played prominent role for the emergence of Dr. Saraki have allegedly decided not to take any Committee Chairmanship to avoid facing any form of persecution from some of the party leaders.
One of the APC Senators told Vanguard on strict condition of anonymity that the Cold War between the Senate President and some leaders of the APC was all about 2019 Presidential election.
He claimed that some of the Senators suspected to have played any role in the emergence of Saraki as the Senate President were strictly being monitored by those who felt embarrassed and defeated in the election for the senate president, adding that they have decided to set trap for them during the oversight functions.
Besides, he said that many of the APC Senators from the North have started having problems with their governors over 2019, and that some of the governors have contributed to the crisis between Dr. Saraki and the APC leadership.
The Senator who was rumoured to be eminently qualified to chair one of the juicy Committees because of his knowledge on the sector said that he alongside other Senators have decided not to accept Committee Chairmanship to avoid any form of persecution by some of the party leaders that felt wounded in the election of the senate president.
He said, “Some of us (Senators) especially the APC Senators have decided not to accept Committee Chairmanship. Those who felt aggrieved over the election of Senate President have decided to embark on a witch haunt and they want to use the Committee to achieve their devilish plans.
“They have planned to use the oversight functions to blackmail us and you know when you are blackmailed whether rightly or wrongly, the public will have a negative impression about you and we don’t want to create that room at all.
“You can see what is happening between the Senators and the governors especially in the North. Some of the governors who have their eyes in 2019 have started fighting their senators.
“One particular governor alongside a former governor that lost the bid to become the APC presidential candidate and one person that arrogates to himself the position of the party leader have decided that the present senate leadership did not have peace and have blackmailed the leadership before the presidency.
“You know that Saraki made sure that the APC did not have a Muslim/Muslim ticket and the party leaders that did not benefit from that have been angry with him (Saraki). The other one felt disappointed that he was not supported during the APC presidential primaries after their alleged initial agreement before they dumped the Peoples Democratic Party.
“You also know that we have only one canonised person in this country who believes that every other person is corrupt. When you are even talking to him and explain your position, he will not talk but only to be watching you because he has already made up his conclusion.”
The APC Senator explained that whatever was happening in the party was because of the 2019 elections, stressing that it was perceived by some of the party leaders that allowing Saraki a breathing space would jeopardise their ambition in 2019.
He noted that with the present composition of the party, if President Muhammadu Buhari decides not to contest the 2019 presidential election, there was the fear that Saraki has the brightest chance to emerge, alleging that it was the contributing factor in the crisis.
He also claimed that those who have become uncomfortable with the way things were going were making every efforts towards ensuring that they blackmailed the senate president before President Buhari.
“Saraki for now has the support of majority of those who decide elections in the North. Both in Sokoto, Gombe, Zamfara and some other states in the North. If he maintains the structure till 2019, there is the fear that he would definitely emerge as the party’s presidential flag bearer.
“Those who are interested in the position are aware of this and especially three of them, one from the South west, a former governor and a serving governor who are all interested are making sure that they blackmail him before President Buhari. You know the President believes that he is the only corrupt-free person in this country”, he stated.
He, however, said that if nothing was done to reconcile all the aggrieved members and accord the required respect to the office of the senate president, it would affect the chances of the party in the 2019 elections, adding that already the public have started having a negative impression on the APC