Strong indications emerged, yesterday, that plans to impeach Senate President, Bukola Saraki, have reached an advanced stage, with meetings held and key players named on the roles they are expected to play.
Investigations by Daily Sun have, however, revealed that the move may fail, as lawmakers already contacted are yet to fully commit to the plot. Last week, Senator Isah Hamman Misau said at plenary that a minister is leading a move to impeach Saraki.
Misau said this when lawmakers condemned the spate of killings in Nigeria. He did not, however, name the minister involved.
“When we were on holiday, so many people were going behind that they should try and remove the Senate President. During this holiday, it was a minister that was spearheading that thing. What is the reason?
“They said the senate president would leave APC and that they should create problems for him (Saraki). What kind of country is this? Everything is about religion and about tribe,” Misau had alleged then. Daily Sun, however, gathered that the said minister believed to be leading the move is a former governor of an oil-producing state in the South South. A serving governor from the North West and a close ally of President Muhammadu Buhari is also believed to be involved in the plot.
It was gathered that, at the meeting in Abuja, where the plot was hatched, four serving senators from the North, who are believed to be against the senate presidency of Saraki, attended. One of the senators is a former governor of a state in the North Central.
Another lawmaker who attended the meeting is a senator from Bauchi State.
A front line rival of Saraki and senator from president Buhari’s home state of Katsina is also involved. The fourth senator, who attended the meeting, is one of the longest serving lawmakers in the National Assembly. At the meeting, the four lawmakers, including the minister from the South South, a serving governor from the North West, one of President Buhari’s top aides, named another former governor of Kano State, who was not at the meeting, to lead the impeachment plot.
Besides Saraki, four other senators are also being allegedly targeted. They are: Dino Melaye; Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi; Misau and Shehu Sani. It was learnt that senators (besidex the four who attended the anti-Saraki meeting), who were poached to join the offensive, told the former governor that it was better to have a united National Assembly, ahead of the 2019 general elections, instead of initiating a destabilisation plot that will die on arrival.
Despite the unwillingness of lawmakers who have been approached to join the fight, the head of the impeachment team reportedly told them the minister is bent on pressing on with the impeachment project.
The lawmakers reportedly said the choice of the minister to lead the plot was a wrong move. On plans to include four senators, the plotters said Misau, Sani, Melaye and Abdullahi were too critical of president Buhari and should, therefore, “be put in their right place.”Those who were conscripted argued that Misau was right to be angry at the Presidency over his trial by the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), following his face-off with the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr. Ibrahim Idris.
In the case of Sani, they said Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai, mobilised All Progressives Congress (APC) chairmen in the local government under his senatorial district not to support his re-election bid. They said the chairmen endorsed Uba Sani, an aide to El-Rufai, as Sani’s replacement.
On Melaye’s case, the lawmakers said instead of Buhari to reconcile him (Melaye) with Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, he had allegedly given the nod to APC National Working Committee to dissolve the state chapter.
Although Saraki is aware of the plot, at the time of filing this report, he was yet to make any official statement on it.
When contacted, his media aide, Mr. Yusuf Olaniyonu, did not make any comments.