The Senate unity forum led by Senator Ahmad Lawan on Sunday, August 23, told the Senate president, Bukola Saraki, that for peace to return to the troubled Senate, he must obey the directives issued by the All Progressives Congress and President Muhammadu Buhari over the choice of principal officers.
The group stated that the principal officers as constituted must be changed and that the present occupiers must vacate their seats before any truce can be reached.
The forum, which canvassed for the election of Senator Ahmad Lawan as Senate president, added that it will withdraw the suit currently in the court challenging the election of the presiding officers of the Senate if the party leaders directed them to do so, The Punch reports.
It tasked the Senate president and his group to show that they are truly sorry for their action before the crisis could be resolved.
This latest statement from the forum comes on the heels of peace moves by Saraki and his group.
It was reported that senators loyal to Saraki, Ali Ndume, Danjuma Goje and Adamu Aliero, secretly met with President Buhari a few days ago for further consultation on the crisis.
The president had reportedly been avoiding Saraki since the crisis at the upper chamber started.
It was also learnt that Saraki met with the national leader of the party, Bola Tinubu as part of moves to straighten ties with him.
The spokesman for the group, Senator Kabir Marafa, said that his group would defend the party’s discipline and its supremacy over all members of the APC in the upper chamber at all times.
He added that senators Ahmad Lawan, Sola Adeyeye, Abu Ibrahim and George Akume must be announced as principal officers before peace can be achieved.
Marafa further explained that the Saraki-led Senate went against both the party’s directive and the rule of ranking in the announcement of the principal officers who were elected by the caucuses of their geopolitical zones.
He said: “Our position has not changed. Those who were appointed as principal officers must vacate their seats first because their appointments contradicted the Senate rule and the position of the party which is supreme.
“The court should determine whether or not the management of the National Assembly was right to have used the Senate Standing Order 2015 which was not amended through due process.”
The forum insisted that they were not fighting their own battle or for personal interests but rather a battle sanctioned by the party to instill discipline in the party.
New indications have emerged that APC leaders are not in the mood to talk peace with Senator Saraki. They insisted that Saraki must follow the party’s directive or there would be no deal.