By Lawrence Olaoye
The National Chairman of Nigeria’s governing party, says the party, APC remains focused on providing good governance to Nigerians.
He stated this Wednesday night, while addressing Journalists at the end of a meeting between President Muhammadu Buhari and APC Senators at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Oshiomhole said the meeting was held at the instance of the Senators who were in the Presidential Villa, to show their solidarity for the President and his administration.
“The Senators have come in huge numbers to prove that the APC remains the party with the largest number of Senators, as well as members in the House of Representatives. Also to prove that we still have what it takes to continue to provide good governance for Nigeria. We have agreed that going forward, the APC cannot be intimidated; the government will not be intimidated or distracted.
“We remain focused and committed to addressing the critical challenges that confront our country, namely security, economy and fight against corruption. On all three, the President is consistent and determined and the senators have come to reassure him of their full backing on these three core commitments which we have made to the Nigerian people and for me as party Chairman, we are very excited,” he said.
The National Chairman said the legislators that defected on Tuesday were victims of misinformation but some of them will retrace their steps and come back to the APC.
Also speaking to Journalists, the Majority Leader in the Senate, Ahmed Lawal, who led the Senators to meeting, said they were in the Villa to pay courtesy to President Buhari and also give him details of what transpired at the Senate on Tuesday July 24.
“We have come to pay a courtesy call on our leader, the President of this country and then inform him about what happened yesterday (Tuesday) in the Senate and indeed the National Assembly; the defection by some of our colleagues from the APC to the People’s Democratic Party, the PDP and various political parties. We informed the President of how we stand in the Senate.
As at today, the APC caucus in the Senate is 53 in number, followed by the largest minority party the PDP with 48 Senators and then the ADC with 2 Senators, APGA has 2 Senators. We have 2 vacant seats which were occupied by APC Senators who are late now. By the grace of God there will be election into those two seats on August 11and hopefully the APC will clinch both and our number of Senators will swell to 55,” he explained.
Re-echoing the position of the party’s National Chairman, Senator Lawal said the APC Senators are consulting widely and some of the defected Senators would come back to the APC.
“Let me also say that even form Tuesday, less than 24 hours into the defection, we had discussions with some of our colleagues who defected and they have shown their willingness and interest to retrace their steps. So, we are working very hard round the clock, with our party’s National leadership led by the very hardworking Adams Oshiomhole, to ensure that we re-engage with our colleagues that defected and that we reach some understanding and resolutions that will enable them to come back home very soon. Even some PDP Senators have indicated their readiness to come into the APC fold,” he stated.
Another APC Senator, Shehu Sani form Kaduna State, while speaking to Journalists, reaffirmed his position as a member of the APC caucus in the Senate, adding that he was pleased with the measures taken by the party’s leadership to address the challenges confronting the party.
“I’m here as a member of the APC caucus in the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and my presence here does not mean that my issues have been solved 100 percent but I am of the believe that we have a leader in the party who is doing everything possible to see that the problems that we have that led to a situation of revolt against the system of iniquity and injustice are resolved. So, I am here because I believe in the leadership of the party and I believe also in the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari and I’m also of the believe that there is no issue that we cannot solve as human beings, as men of conscience and conviction,” Sani stressed.
Also Present at the meeting was the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha and Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari among others.
42 of the 53 Senators of the APC were present at the meeting and President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki was conspicuously absent.