Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume has said that the choice of Lawan by the APC is just a nomination and not imposition. The senator also said that his interest to contest for the Senate presidency is not a personal one by those backed by his colleagues.
Ndume also asked his party to be careful in the selection of presiding officers as it is clearly stated in the constitution Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume representing Borno South Senatorial District in the upper chamber and who was also the first senate leader has said that any attempt to impose people on the 9th senate will fail. The former senate leader made this known in an interview with the media, as he also asked his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) to be careful of not repeating its 2015 mistake, Nigerian Tribune reports.
When asked of his thought about the agreement by the party to choose Lawan as the next president, he said he is surprise that the party settled for an individual rather than using a zoning formula, saying the party ignored the constitutional provision of such process. He said: “First of all, let me say that the decision by the party to settle for an individual instead of zoning the position to a particular geopolitical zone and also consulting or allowing the senators from that zone to decide who among them they prefer as Senate President, is a surprise. We were surprised on Monday night when the National Chairman of our party told us a decision had been taken to adopt Ahmad Lawan as candidate from the North East for the position of the president of the Senate.
The reason why I am shocked and I am sure that is the feeling of my colleagues, is that, the constitutional provision for the emergence of the leadership of the Senate is clearly spelt out. Section 51 (a) of the Constitution says that “there shall be a Senate President and Deputy Senate President who shall be elected by members of the House.’” Ndume also said he would, however, still wait on his colleagues to decide his fate because they encouraged him to run for the Senate presidency seat, while also adding that the party has only nominated Lawan, and not elected him. He also mentioned that only the Senate has the sole power to elect its president and deputy, saying his decision to contest for the seat is not a personal one. When asked if stands by the claim that any attempt by his party to impose on the National Assembly will backfire, he said it is the decision of his colleagues, and he did not categorical say that, mentioning again that he cannot say Lawan has been imposed but nominated.
He also added that even the opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) showed wisdom in 2007 by zoning the position to the north-central. In his words: “…The decision is now left for my colleagues. If you look at the history of the National Assembly, such decisions have never gone down well. In 1999, Evans Ewerem was imposed. He didn’t last. Wabara was also imposed. He also didn’t last. After that, the PDP which we have accused of impunity didn’t do this. In 2007, the PDP showed wisdom by zoning the position to North Central.