A former Governor of Ogun State, Olusegun Osoba, and an elder statesman, Tanko Yakasai, have backed the former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, to become the 10th Senate Presidency.
The two elder statesmen made this known on Thursday night during a meeting with a group of former senators backing Akpabio and Senator Barau Jibrin for the position of Senate President and Deputy Senate President, respectively.
In his remarks, Osoba called on the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to call a meeting of all Senate President hopefuls should be convened to sway them to support Akpabio.
The former governor said the ruling party cannot afford to start the new government with another crisis when it is already dealing with the fuel subsidy removal crisis.
He said: “I want to appeal to you on two issues. Let us all organize a serious lobby system by convening a meeting of all aspirants for the position of senate president in the 10th senate to make them see the reason why they should toe the line of the party,” Osoba said.
“The party has decided on zoning and has zoned the positions. We cannot afford to start this government with another crisis. The fuel subsidy removal crisis is already there.
“Let us go back to our states and lobby our senators-elect to support the choice of the party. With this, I believe we shall achieve our goal without any hitch.”
On his part, Yakasai said the choice of Akpabio is easier to support and advised other aspirants to shelve their senate president bids.
He said: “The person is no other than one of the few among the multitudes of people we know who is privileged to occupy three important positions many of our compatriots will wish to occupy any time such an opportunity presents itself to them.
“The personality is no other than a one-time governor of his state, a one-time minister, and presently a senator-elect of the federal republic of Nigeria–my popular, competent and amiable senator Godswill Apkabio.”
Also speaking, former Kano North Senator, Basheer Lado asked the Senate Chief Whip, Orji Uzor Kalu, and former Governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari to back Akpabio.
Lado said the former Governor of Akwa Ibom state becoming the Senate President is in the interest of the country, adding that political parties should not be seen as platforms for winning elections.
He said: “With senators Akpabio and Barau Jibril in charge of the 10th Senate, there is no doubt that the national assembly will provide the necessary synergy to His Excellency Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration to ensure that all Nigerians benefit from good governance and democratic dividends.
“We, therefore, call on all you stakeholders to support this patriotic move.
“In the interest of Nigeria’s national stability, peace, and party cohesion, we equally request once again that other aspirants withdraw their candidacies.”