In his efforts to make peace with the Presidency over its distaste on the composition of the senate leadership, Senate President Bukola Saraki, has resorted to seeking the assistance of emirs and traditional rulers, SUNDAY PUNCH has learnt.
In realising this objective, the senate president, has sought the help of the Emir of his home town, Ilorin, Kwara State, Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, an aide of the emir told our correspondent.
President Buhari, since the inauguration of the 8th Senate on June 9, has reportedly been shunning Saraki whose emergence and that of his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu of the Peoples Democratic Party did not go down well with the leadership of the All Progressives Congress.
According to the emir’s aide who spoke on condition of anonymity, the senate president has requested some prominent traditional rulers in the state led by Sulu-Gambari, who is also the Chairman, Kwara State Council of Traditional Rulers to intercede on his behalf with Buhari.
It was gathered that the monarchs had wanted to meet with Buhari but could not as a result of the President’s visit to the United States and his recent visit to Cameroon to seek for regional collaboration against Boko Haram.
The aide also told our correspondent that this would not be the first time Sulu-Gambari had interceded on behalf of Saraki concerning the senate presidency.
According to him, the Emir of Ilorin before the emergence of Saraki as the Senate President had sent a team of emissaries to the National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, with a view to getting the former Lagos State governor soften on his stand against Saraki’s ambition to occupy the exalted position.
He said Saraki is now more worried with the resolution of the leadership tussle in the House of Representatives, where the Speaker, Alhaji Yakubu Dogora, after meetings with Buhari and other APC stakeholders acceded to the party’s decision and announced Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila as the House Leader.
The aide added that Saraki was in Ilorin at the weekend, adding that the Senate President would continue with his mobilisation for prominent stakeholders to smoothen the relationship between him and Buhari.
But in a telephone interview with our correspondent, the spokesperson for the Emir of Ilorin, Alhaji Solihu Mohammed, said though he could not confirm Sulu-Gambari’s mediatory role between Buhari and Saraki, the Emir had been playing unifying roles for the sustenance of the nation’s democracy.
Mohammed said, “I am not aware that Saraki has approached the emir to smoothen relationship with the senate president and the president of the country.”