Saturday, August 11, 2018

Resign Now Or We'll Impeach You - Oshiomhole Warns Saraki

The Presidency and the national leadership of the APC are determined to see Bukola Saraki out of the office of Senate President as soon as possible.

Saraki got a clear ultimatum from the All Progressives Congress (APC) headquarters yesterday: resign now or be impeached.

The APC national chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, warned that the party would have no option than to commence action to impeach Saraki should he continue to cling to office after defecting to the PDP.

And Oshiomhole declared that the planned impeachment process would follow the law and devoid of thuggery.

He spoke at a press conference in Abuja in response to comments made by Saraki at his Wednesday’s interactive session with reporters on his defection to the PDP.

Saraki, on that occasion, said he was motivated to take the action in the best interest of the country and democracy.

But Oshiomhole said yesterday that Saraki has always placed his personal interest above that of the nation, the party and the people he represents in the national assembly.

“The truth is that it is doubtful if the Senate President has ever acted either in the national interest or in the interest of his own political party before his defection recently,” the APC chair said.

Recalling Saraki’s emergence as Senate President, Oshiomhole said: "he decided, clearly, against the party position to enter into a deal with the opposition PDP and got a faction of the PDP, taking advantage of the provisions of the constitution while majority of the APC senators were holding a meeting at the International Conference Centre to resolve the issue of leadership of the senate and other principal officers that were expected to be produced by the ruling party with majority senators.

“By putting his personal interest over and above the interest of the party, he went into alliance with PDP and conceded the position of deputy senate president to the opposition in other to obtain the support of the opposition for him to become the senate President.

“So, for the first time in our democratic history in Nigeria, we had a situation whereby, whereas the APC had majority of senators, it went on to elect a PDP person as deputy senate President.

“This action alone portrays Senator Saraki for who he is and that his personal interest comes before any other interest, including national interest and that of his political party.

“Having gone into this unholy alliance with the opposition and mortgaging the rights of the ruling party, he appointed opposition senators to head strategic committees whose activities can affect, either for good or for bad, the workings of government and the relationship between the government and the legislature by trading away those strategic and sensitive positions.

“Senator Saraki did that in other to continue to protect himself against the wishes of his party as Senate President. That showed that the only thing that was constant in his mind was to cling on to the position of Senate President even if it is at the expense of his own party and the country.

“Even the media has consistently drawn attention to how Senator Saraki is managing the Senate to the extent that questions have been raised as to whose interest the Senate is serving.”

‘Saraki mishandled FG’s budget proposals’ 
Oshiomhole also drew attention to the National Assembly’s handling of federal government’s budget proposals, saying: “Nigerians expected the APC government under President Buhari to do everything possible this year to make up for lost time in terms of budget implementation and addressing critical infrastructures without which sustainable development is impossible.

“The Senate under Senator Saraki chose to delay the budget up to the end of the first half of the year and to coincide with the period of the rainy season such that those aspects of infrastructure such as roads cannot be constructed during the rainy season.

“These were not errors of the head under his leadership, but clearly designed to frustrate the capacity of the government to address critical infrastructural deficit without which the ordinary man cannot feel the impact of governance.

“Again on receipt of the budget, the President cried out that it was a clear distortion from the well thought out proposals that he submitted to them. He appreciated that while they can make alteration to the budget, he did not expect that it would be completely rewritten as to make far more provisions for recurrent expenditure with very little for capital projects. He said this budget will be difficult to implement.

“So, when I said he has never put the interest of Nigeria first, I support this statement by reference to the deliberate delay of the budget and deliberate manipulation of the provisions in the budget in a way that will compromise the capacity of the government to address critical infrastructures.

“It is no longer a secret that as Senate President, he tried to conspire with others to create a semblance of division within the ruling party having failed to truncate the convention, when they assembled a handful of people who were neither delegates nor contestants for any office at the convention to purport to have formed a political party.

“There is nothing for me to add to the illegality of this action and the false foundation that Senator Saraki tried to leave than to adopt the well thought out presentation of Femi Falana.”

Saraki’s actions, he added, did not portray him as a man who has the interest of his people at heart.

“Those things did not portray him as someone who is concerned about sustaining democracy because sustaining democracy also implies absolute commitment to the rule of law,” Oshiomhole said.




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