Senate President Bukola Saraki says he will not ditch the All Progressives Congress for the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. He says allegation he plans to do is “absurd and laughable”.
“It is just cheap blackmail by political adversaries who want to call a dog a bad name in order to hang it. And those making such desperate allegations should remember that I willingly left the PDP on matters of principles when the party was in power. Is it now that the party is out of government and in opposition that I will now return having worked so hard for my party in the last general elections?” Saraki stated in a statement on Wednesday.
Saraki, who rode into his current position through PDP senators bloc vote, says he is “a loyal party member and a leader of the party, committed to contributing my quota to building the party and helping it to deliver its promise of change to the people of Nigeria.” Saraki commends President Muhammadu Buhari for not interfering with the national assembly election as he earlier promised. He calls the president’s action a “great mark of leadership” and “a demonstration of the President’s commitment to democracy”.
“I commend President Buhari for remaining steadfast in his commitment to the principle of non-interference in National Assembly politics even in the face of great pressure on him to act otherwise. This shows that Mr. President is a man of great conviction who, in his own words, belongs to everyone and to no one.”
Saraki continues in his statement: “Our country is going through a very trying time. We have the challenge of insecurity in the North East; the massive problem of youth unemployment; and general economic challenges occasioned by fall in revenue. All these are against the huge public expectation that propelled our party into office.
“We have pursued our legitimate aspirations appropriately. Now that the issues have been settled, we need to move on in the larger interest of our people, whose mandate made us to be in a position to aspire to these positions in the first place,” the Senate President said.
Saraki aligned with the opposition PDP to emerge the senate president against his party’s wish and preferred candidate. He shunned a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday while his most of his colleagues gathered at the International Conference Centre, the venue of the meeting. Instead, Saraki colluded with the PDP senators and a sprinkle of his APC supporters, all of who were the only ones in the chamber, to be elected as the sole candidate.