- Senators reportedly commence search for the replacement of Akpabio as minority leader
- Some of the senators claim to be aware that Akpabio was relating with the APC, but decided not to sack him
- The senators express regret that Akpabio left the PDP to APC
Some members of the Nigerian Senate have reportedly revealed that they have commenced a search for a replacement of Godswill Akpabio as the minority leader of the upper legislative chamber as he prepares to join the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Vanguard reports that the senators claimed that they knew when Akpabio started making moves to defect from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) but that they decided to stay any action against him to allow peace in the legislature.
The senators reportedly said they feared that removing him could overheat the polity and cause frictions in the PDP.
The report quoted a senator from Akwa Ibom where Akpabio hails from as saying: “Some months ago, it came to the knowledge of the Senate PDP caucus that the minority leader was having some challenges with leading the members.
“A number of our colleagues noticed it and called for leadership change, but the former governor went round, begging for cooperation. With emerging developments, those who moved for his replacement are now vindicated.”
The report quoted another senator as saying: “We got to know late that he was no longer one of us. We had thought of removing him as minority leader since last year and ostracise him from serious plans but two senators prevailed on us and pleaded that he would change.
“All along, we suspected that he was having contacts with the ruling party. Twice, it was reported that he visited the ‘Presidential Villa’ and he never denied it. A number of our members were worried; what would a minority leader be doing in the Villa without the Senate president or other principal officers.
“For instance, apart from keeping away from all the campaigns on the governorship of our candidate in Ekiti state, he was actually linked with working closely with the ruling APC on the matter of that election.
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“Even as tight as we thought we had kept our plans on the defection of 14 APC senators on July 24, the ruling party and the presidency were briefed on every step and our members were worried.
“We realised late that he was double-dealing with the Modu Sheriff faction during our struggle to reclaim our party from the hawks.”
NAIJ.com earlier reported that on Monday, August 6, Godswill Akpabio visited the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu.
The visit among many others have caused a ruse in the camp of the opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
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