June 11th looks like a date that is very faraway in the face of National Assembly lawmakers, especially the Senators but it is just a month away.
The Nigerian Senate is looking forward to electing a new Senate President after the ninth assembly is inaugurated and the Senators that are vying for this posts have continued to intensify campaign ahead of the d-day.
Senate Ahmad Lawan, who prides himself as the most suitable for the position of the President of Senate, has the backing of his party, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) leadership.
His recent pilgrimage to media houses, in the company of his constant 19 senators and senators-elect, has been described by political pundits as a last minute attempt to change the media narrative about his candidature.
Lawan’s candidature has been hit with various allegations including being labelled ‘President’s Puppet’ as he enjoys President Buhari’s support to contest as the Senate President of the ninth assembly.
Also, PDP lawmakers are finding it hard to key into Lawan’s candidature as it was disclosed by sources within the party that the senator has not unveiled his blueprint, which means he wants to maintain the status quo.
Former Leader of the Senate, Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume, on the other hand, appears to be reaching out to lawmakers who are still undecided.
He has reached out to almost every senator and senators-elect, despite series of calls that he should throw in the towel, the Borno South lawmaker appears ready to fight till the end.
In the midst of the uncertainty surrounding the race, a new possible entrant, Senator Danjuma Goje, has now expanded the conversation.
For many keen observers, Goje is seen as the biggest threat to Lawan’s emergence as the President of the Senate, as he enjoys the support of the PDP Senators, especially the incumbent Senate President, Bukola Saraki.
Last weekend, many returning and senators-elect attended his daughter’s wedding in Abuja, an indication that he enjoys their support, an observer noted.
According to insider sources who spoke to DAILY SUN, more senators are expected to throw their weight behind Goje’s candidature as it was gathered that several meetings are being held to recruit more senators-elect for Goje, ahead of the inauguration of the parliament on the 11th of June.
Although he is yet to officially declare for the position, his supporters have already gone ahead to launch a nationwide campaign on his behalf.
A group, North Central Alliance, said it would mobilise a 2000-man match to the National Assembly in support of Goje as the next President of the Senate.
However, the group did not mention a date for the match but said it would hold before the election of the next President of the Senate in June.
The chairman of the group, Nasiru Isiyaku, at a news briefing called on all senators-elect to support Goje for the position, while describing Goje as a faithful member of the APC family and deserves the party’s support and that his credentials were good enough, having been governor for eight years from 2003 to 2011, and having been in the Senate since then.
“The position of the President of the Senate requires administrative and parliamentary knowledge which Goje possesses. Our party, APC, is a party of the people and for us, Senator Danjuma Goje is the right man for the job. He has the required experience as a tested administrator and high ranking lawmaker. He is a man of the people and a senator who has what it takes to carry others across party lines along,” he said.
The chairman of the group further said Goje is a party man to the core and “fits perfectly into the next level agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari”.
Interestingly, Goje’s candidacy recently received a boost with his endorsement by the North East Consultative Forum (NESF) and five other groups in the geopolitical zone.
Regardless, on the 11th of June, 109 senators will be sworn in while APC has 64 senators-elect, PDP has 44, while Young Democratic Party (YDP) has one.
Feel free to leave your comment on the story