Northerners always finding ways to remove any Southern Senate President- Senator Bamidele

ABUJA- Senate leader Opeyemi Bamidele has alleged that northern senators always attempt to abruptly unseat a Senate president from southern Nigeria.

“I’m speaking as a Southerner for the first time. The attempt to take the election of the leadership of this Senate beyond June 13, 2023, must stop,” Mr Bamidele,  representing Ekiti Central, said during Tuesday’s plenary.

Mr Bamidele reacted to Senator Abdul Ningi’s claim that the 2024 budget was padded from N25 trillion to N28.7 trillion and that the executive was implementing the inflated budget.

The Ekiti lawmaker accused the Bauchi Central senator of trying to instigate an impeachment plot against Senate President Godswill Akpabio (Akwa-Ibom North-west) despite members of the Northern Senators Forum dissociating themselves from it.

The Senate leader likened Mr Ningi’s action to a failed civilian coup, accusing the northern senator of trying to use the forum’s name to push his agenda.

He said, “What this was set out to do was tantamount to a failed civilian coup. He wanted to use the platform of the Northern Senators Forum.”

Mr Bamidele warned that any attempt to take over the Senate’s leadership beyond June 13, 2023, must stop, just as he recalled that over 60 senators voted for Mr Akpabio.

“Over 60 senators voted for Godswill Akpabio, but over 40 voted against Akpabio, the will of the majority. But a few have refused to let the electioneering activities pass them by. They still hold bile, and that is why it is always about Akpabio, never about the Senate, House of Representatives, DG, or Budget.

“It’s always about Akpabio, never about the Senate. This is a defining moment for us to say if we’re going to have a stable Senate, let us have one. It’s not about north and south; it’s about our rules; it’s about our people who are hungry and deprived.

“Mr President (Akpabio), you are sitting as chair. Make no mistake about it. A few people who felt they would not give you more than one year to spend on this chair want to do everything possible before June 13 to remove you,” the senator said.

Mr Bamidele recalled that a South-South representative last occupied the Senate president position over 40 years ago.

“The last time the entire people of the South had the chance to be Senate president was during Obasanjo regime when it went to the South-East.

“Five people (northerners) were elected in quick succession. But as soon as it left the South, we had peace and stability again because we will always cooperate.

“David Mark spent eight years; Senator Ahmed Lawan spent peaceful four years. Saraki even with all he did spent four years, was not impeached. It is about Akpabio, it is about the South. You can now understand why Senator Ningi will want to use the name of the Northern Senators Forum even when most of them did not agree to it,” he stated.

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