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NASS REPUBLIC: Can Lawan calm aggrieved opposition Senators? Two other stories, and a quote to remember

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2020 budget to be passed on November 28

On August 3, the President of the Senate, Dr. Ahmad Lawan, summoned security chiefs to appear before the National Assembly (NASS) over the festering insecurity in the country.

We tracked two other stories that kept the National Assembly abuzz in the past week.

1. Lawan’s moves

Lawan

Sequel to Lawan’s summon, Senators had a marathon meeting with the nation’s security chiefs. The Senate President did describe the security situation in the country as “most frightening,” while the Federal Lawmakers suggested ways in which the situation could be addressed.

“We have to review what more we have to do, and what differently we have to do,” Lawan said.

Opposition Senators, on July 27, had staged a walkout when Lawan turned down a point of order raised by the Minority Leader of the Senate, Philip Tanimu Aduba; calling for a deliberation on the worsening insecurity.

Following this, Aduba, and all the opposition Senators stormed out of the Senate chamber chanting “All we are saying, Buhari must go, Nigeria must survive, Ahmad Lawan should follow…”

While briefing newsmen in the company of the protesting Senators, Aduba said, among others: “At the closed session, we agreed that we must give the President an ultimatum, that if he failed to comply with our resolutions on how to tackle insecurity within six weeks, we would move impeachment proceedings against him.”

It is easy to read Lawan’s intentions, which is to save the presidency and the ruling party some public embarrassment. Summoning security chiefs and gathering lawmakers is, no doubt, an attempt to build stake-holder mentality.

Amidst this, however, some questions still beg for answers:

1. Can Lawan’s inspired meeting with the security chiefs translate to any change in the security situation?

2. Would the meeting quench the burning desire of the opposition Senators to impeach President Buhari, if the insecurity persist after the 6-week ultimatum?

On the other hand, the capacity of the opposition Senators to impeach the President remains in doubt. And, the Presidency may be proved right in its dismissal of their ultimatum as mere “performative and babyish antics.”

The above argument, perhaps, finds ground in the past antecedents of PDP where it has increasingly shown lack of capacity to hold down a position.

All said, Nigerians cannot wait for the expiration of the ultimatum to see the next line of action of the federal lawmakers.


NASS MEMORY LANE

Who said;

“Life is about negotiation, and I believe that Federal Government and ASUU can end this strike today. Nothing derails a country like lack of education: It’s worse than insecurity.”

Answer: See end of post


Two other stories

2. Abaribe’s subtle support for Peter Obi

The immediate-past Senate Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, on July 28, averred that despite the differences in his political affiliation, it will be difficult to tell people not to vote for the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi.

Read also: NASS REPUBLIC: Unending debate over Muslim-Muslim ticket. Two other stories, and a quote to remember

“Though I’m in a different party, the truth is that it will be difficult for me to say: Don’t vote for Obi. In fact, some parties have already adopted him. They tell people: For President, vote for Obi, and then for other positions vote for our party,” Abaribe was quoted to have said in a virtual town hall meeting.

His disposition presents an opportunity for a fresh brand of politicking where the exceptional qualities of an aspirant, rather than narrow primordial interests, or party inclinations, determine how far he or she can go.

Are there many others in the mould of Abaribe who may be shopping for excellence or is his disposition a pretentious move to chase clout? Will he stay consistent? Time will tell.

3. Again, alarm raised on food security

On July 27, the House of Representatives raised the alarm over an impending food shortage/crisis in the country, and called on the Federal Government to initiate emergency preventive measures.

These resolutions were reached sequel to the unanimous adoption of a motion of urgent public importance by Rimamnde Shawulu and Solomon Bob.

Shawulu said: “The House notes that in the new projection at least 16 States and the Federal Capital Territory will face a major food crisis in the year 2022.”

“The House is cognisant of the fact that terrorists often lay siege to farms, kidnap farmers, sack villages and force farmers to pay ransom or some fees before accessing their farms,” he added.

The warning is not new. Lawmakers, and concerned Nigerians alike, have continued to express worries over how farmers had abandoned their farms to protect their lives from bloodthirsty terrorists.

It would do good for the members of the House of Representatives to go beyond raising the alarm, but in addition do much more to hold the Buhari administration to account.

Will they do the needful? Is the Buhari administration ready to perform its expected duties, and save Nigerians from the dire consequences of food crisis? Again, only time has the answers.


Answer: Senator Orji Uzor Kalu

Kalu made the statement, on July 27, 2022, in his appeal to President Buhari to put more pressure on his Ministers to reach an agreement with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), in order to end the 5-month old strike. He represents Abia North Senatorial District at the National Assembly.

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