Thursday, January 23, 2020

Division in APC may delay submission to Senate

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There are feelers that the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Presidency are struggling to manage series of political turmoil billowing in virtually all the states regarding ministerial nominees.
“My brother, the crisis is much this time around, particularly as party leaders have become confident that the President is not a lone stakeholder in the nomination exercise. So, in virtually all the states, particularly those we did not produce governors, the APC is not having it easy at all,” a lawmaker confessed, yesterday.
He disclosed that, “in some places like the South South geo-political zone, there have emerged very strong uncompromising leaders, who would want to have everything their own way, and nothing else.”

The source further disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari might defer accepting any nominee from states where the struggle to produce ministers has become an issue or difficult to resolve until a later date.
Once a scenario like this occurs, the lawmaker contended, “the President would have no choice than to submit to the Senate, names of persons that stakeholders have fully agreed”, adding that the possible intervention of the President in such areas might lead to the submission of partial ministerial list, or even outright delay of its submission.
The Senate proceeded on the two-week vacation last Thursday to allow management of the National Assembly furnish lawmaker’s offices and perfect arrangements for seamless takeoff of the business of lawmaking.
At the moment, the structure housing offices of the 109 lawmakers is virtually empty because all office equipment, and furniture pieces were sold to the members of the 8th Senate upon the completion of their tenure.
It was learnt that the cost of the old items including television sets, sets of chairs, air-conditioners, refrigerators etc, would be calculated and deducted from the severance allowance of each of the outgoing senators.

MEANWHILE the hue of Buhari’s next cabinet would soon crystalise, just as the character of its composition would also emerge within the next two weeks, The Guardian learnt, yesterday.
The Ahmad Lawan-led 9th Senate would upon resumption from its two-week recess on July 2, begin a speedy screening and confirmation of nominees, whose names are expected to be submitted by the Presidency any moment from now.
A ranking senator who volunteered information on the issue told The Guardian that at the moment, there was nothing on ground regarding the list of persons to be confirmed as ministers.
He was, however, optimistic that within the period of the Senate’s recess, President Buhari would turn in the list.

Another lawmaker, a former House of Representatives member, who got elected into the Senate in the February 23, 2019 election said although the President is still within reasonable time if he submits the list before July, expectations are that he would make up for the time lost during his first term when he delayed the ministerial list for six months.
He further noted that it is particularly very strategic and helpful for the President to meet the July timeline because the Senate might proceed on its annual end of session holiday at the end of that month to reconvene in September.
“The President should take advantage of the three weeks that the Senate would be in session between July 2 and 31 by ensuring that the ministerial list is ready before we resume from this two-week recess, so that we simply screen and confirm the nominees within the three weeks that we are going to sit, and thereafter proceed on end of session recess.”
According to him, “anything short of that would amount to dragging Nigeria back to the delay experienced four years ago because the Senate won’t resume until around the third week of September.”Read More

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