With barely eight days to the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly, the tussle for the seat of the Senate President has intensified, as the two major camps of candidates have laid claims to having the majority of support.
Naija News reports that there are now two major camps contending for the seat of the President of the Senate, that is the camp of the former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Senator Godswill Akpabio, and that of the former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari.
It would be recalled that the leadership of the All Progressive Congress(APC) had endorsed Akpabio and Senator Jibrin Barau (Kano North) as preferred candidates for Senate president and deputy, respectively.
However, the decision didn’t sit well with other contenders for the seat including Yari, Senate Chief Whip, Orji Uzor Kalu, and Imo-West senator-elect, Osita Izunaso, who have formed an alliance to support Yari now.
While several calls have been made for Yari’s camp to respect party supremacy by bowing out of the race, efforts have continued by both camps to win more support on their sides.
It was learnt that to win the election, candidates require a simple majority of the 109 senators.
This online news gathered that going ahead to contest the seat against the party’s choice, Yari’s camp held a meeting with the lawmakers at Destination Hotel, Wuse 2 on Thursday and the Akpabio camp hosted senators-elect at Transcorps Hilton Hotel, Abuja;
While claiming majority support, one of the leaders in Akpabio’s camp according to Daily Trust said they had consolidated their lead with 65 senators-elect.
He said the attendance was not limited to members of the APC, adding that it was a fruitful session.
The source noted that “We had in attendance 65 senators-elect including former National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, immediate past governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi (APC, Ebonyi) and a ranking lawmaker, Enyinnaya Abaribe (Abia, APGA). An elder statesman, Segun Osoba was also in attendance.”
Similarly, a source from Yari’s camp also said the attendance was impressive, noting that “Ranking senators like Adamu Aliero (Kebbi), Danjuma Goje (Gombe), Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia), former Sokoto State governor, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal and other senators-elect from APC, PDP and LP attended the meeting.
“The meeting convened by the Senate Democratic Caucus (Yari’s camp) had in attendance 57 senators-elect while about 16 others sent in their regrets.
“We are going to take the final decision on the whole matter on Tuesday and Nigerians would know that the current zoning arrangements done by the APC had collapsed.”