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10th Senate Presidency: Lawmakers Withdrawing Support For Akpabio – Yari Claims




Senate Presidency: Senators Dump Akpabio For Yari After Meeting With Tinubu - Reports
Godswill Akpabio and Abdulaziz Yari

Former governor of Zamfara State, Senator Abdulaziz Yari, has asserted that lawmakers are beginning to withdraw their support for Akwa Ibom State’s former Governor, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, for the 10th senate presidency race.

Naija News reports that there is currently division in the All Progressives Congress (APC) and among lawmakers from the opposition party over the emergence of the leadership of the 10th National Assembly.

President Bola Tinubu and some APC stakeholders are said to have endorsed Akpabio as Senate President and Senator Barau Jubrin as his deputy. The development is, however, contested by some party chieftains.

Speaking during the weekend, Senator Yari, who is also in the race for the 10th Senate Presidency, said most lawmakers are already deserting Akpabio’s camp and are shifting their allegiance to him.

The campaign director-general of the Yari for Senate president group, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim, disclosed this, stating that no one in Nigeria has more money to spend on politics than a former governor of a South-South state.

Naija News understands that Senator Ibrahim said this in reaction to a statement credited to his counterpart of the Akpabio campaign group, Senator Ali Ndume, over the weekend that Senator Yari’s only claim to the Senate presidency was money.

The Yari campaign DG said, “Ndume might have read the handwriting on the wall that majority of the Senators are deserting Akpabio and shifting their support to our good-natured candidate, Abdulaziz, and is therefore in a panic mood, which brought about that preposterous statement.

“That careless outburst has further brightened the chances of distinguished Senator Abdulaziz Yari Abubakar to clinch the presidency of the Senate.”

The Yari campaign DG further stated that Akpabio has a checkered history with the Senate.

Ibrahim said: “As Minister, he threw several of his colleagues, including Senators Nwaoboshi, James manager and others, under the bus. Mr Akpabio had released the names of some federal lawmakers involved with contracts when he presided at the Ministry for Niger Delta. He listed Mr Nwaoboshi against 53 projects. Akpabio also listed two other senators, Matthew Urhoghide and James Manager and a former senator, Samuel Anyanwu, and linked them to projects.

“The former Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on the NDDC, Nicholas Mutu, was also named by the minister as receiving 74 contracts – the highest among the listed lawmakers. With this toxic relationship between Akpabio and the National Assembly, Akpabio is more likely to polarize the 10th assembly and take its eye off the ball when it comes to its constitutional duties and obligations to the people.

“Among other allegations, Akpabio himself has been alleged of perpetrating a N40billion fraud when he headed the Niger Delta Development Commission NDDC. In 2020, the Senate and the House of Representatives resolved to probe the alleged N40 billion financial recklessness of the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC being supervised by Akpabio. Heading the 10th assembly would give him the opportunity to be vindictive to retaliate and get back at those who fell afoul of his expectations.”

According to him, some of these infractions are coming to haunt Akpabio’s aspiration to lead the 10th assembly and tilt the victory pendulum towards Yari.

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He said it was the reason why Senator Ndume is panicking.

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