- The All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders are not happy with the current bickering between the National Assembly and the presidency
- The party leaders have resolved to intervene in the situation threatening to tear the party apart
- The major reason of the feud is the confirmation of the chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu
A report by The Punch indicates that APC leaders met over the crisis between the presidency and the Senate on the appointment of EFCC boss, Ibrahim Magu.
According to the report, the party intervened in the crisis and would declare its position before the end of this week.
A presidency official quoted in the report said those who attended the meeting, which was held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Thursday, July 6, included the national chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; the deputy national chairman, northSenator Lawal Shuaibu; the national secretary, Mai Mala Buni; the national treasurer, Mohammed Gwagwaruwa; and the national organising secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso.
The source also disclosed that it was the Senate president, Dr Bukola Saraki, who contacted Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, on Tuesday, July 4, after the Senate passed the latest resolution on Magu.
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According to the official, Saraki expressed his readiness to attend any fence-mending meeting if there was any.
“To be fair to the Senate President, he was the one who contacted the Acting President shortly after their resolution – to express his willingness to attend any meeting organised to find a lasting solution to the matter and he attended,” the source said.
But a National Assembly source said the meeting between the acting president and the Senate president on was at the instance of Osinbajo.
The source said the Senate’s resolution on Tuesday compelled Osinbajo to invite Saraki to the meeting.
“A meeting took place between Saraki and Osinbajo. The Acting President actually reached out to the Senate President after the lawmakers sent a strong signal to the Presidency.
“The Acting President seems to have realised the implication of what he said. He was literally begging at the meeting that nobody should heat up the polity; that what he said was only a reaction to what Mr. Femi Falana said,” the source added.
An unnamed top ranking APC official quoted in the report, said the party leaders may soon convene a meeting to be jointly attended by the two arms of government.
The source said: “We are intervening to prevent things from getting out of hand. We are using back channels to reach out to the executive and the members of the legislature.
“We don’t want individuals to take advantage of the situation to advance their personal agenda. Egos are bruised and we must do everything to de-escalate tension.
“For now, we are reaching out to both parties to get them to avoid making public statements capable of exacerbating the situation; we will take it up from there.”
Osinbajo had, in an interview in April ruled out the possibility of President Muhammadu Buhari replacing Magu, whose nomination was rejected by the Senate twice.
He had said he aligned himself with the argument of a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr. Femi Falana, that Senate confirmation was not needed for the EFCC chairman based on the provisions of Section 171 of the constitution.
Osinbajo’s statement drew the ire of senators, who on Tuesday, threatened to withhold all requests for confirmation into executive positions from the presidency.
Meanwhile, the chairman of the Kwara state chapter of the APC, Alhaji Ishola Balogun-Fulani, has raised the alarm that some people close to the federal government are taking advantage of the ill health of President Muhammadu Buhari to destabilise his government.
The APC chieftain made the comment during a media briefing in the Kwara state capital, Illorin on Friday, June 30.
In the interview below with NAIJ.com TV, APC chieftain, Comrade Timi Frank warns the ruling party to resolve its internal bickering before 2019.