Senators belonging to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and their All Progressives Congress, APC, were, yesterday, preparing for a showdown over different positions on the confirmation of two of 16 remaining ministerial nominees.
It was, however, learnt that Senate President Bukola Saraki was determined to weigh in on behalf of the former governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechiand the ministerial nominee from Cross River State, Usani Uguru. The duo had been caught up in a grudge war mounted by PDP senators.Amaechi- saraki Amaechi is held in contempt by the PDP Senate caucus for his role in the defeat of the former ruling party in the last round of elections. Uguru brought himself into the bad book of the PDP Senate caucus when, during his screening, he said “God forbid” to a question as to his membership of the PDP.
Following the end of the screening of the nominees yesterday, the PDP Senate caucus held a meeting where they reportedly took a position against the confirmation of Amaechi. The senators were said to have resolved not to consider Amaechi’s nomination unless the report of the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges on the petitions filed against the former Rivers State governor was brought forward for consideration first.
Last five nominees screened
Five nominees were screened, yesterday, bringing to an end, the exercise that commenced about three weeks ago.
The five nominees screened were former Vice-Chancellor of Imo State University, Professor Anthony Anwuka (Imo); financial expert and medical doctor, Okechukwu Enelamah (Abia); newspaper columnist, Adamu Adamu (Bauchi); former Executive Secretary of National Hajj Commission, Mohammed Musa Bello (Adamawa), and Aisha Abubakar (Sokoto).
However, the confirmation exercise which was expected to commence immediately after, did not, as Senate President Saraki announced the adjournment of the Senate to today.
PDP senators sulk, plan offensive PDP senators are also said to have been further miffed by the reverses suffered by the party in Rivers State in the last one week, including the cancellation of Governor Nyesom Wike’s election and that of PDP state legislators, and Tuesday’s Supreme Court’s rejection of Wike’s bid to negate the sitting of the Governorship Election Tribunals in Abuja.
Although they refused to address the media after their meeting which lasted for just thirty minutes, some members, who spoke to Vanguard on the condition of anonymity said the meeting resolved that before the confirmation, the Samuel Anyanwu-led Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions’ report, must be considered.
One of the sources also said the PDP senators, in the meeting, resolved not to allow Pastor Usani Uguru to be confirmed today. He described Uguru as a light-hearted man who cannot be entrusted with any sensitive public office like the one he was nominated for.