Ahead of the inauguration and voting for the leadership of 9th National Assembly billed for Tuesday, governors of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have relocated to Abuja, in order to monitor proceedings and to ensure that everything goes according to plans.
Sunday Telegraph investigations revealed that the governors, who have been in Abuja since Thursday, were leaving nothing to chance.
“They will be physically present to monitor how the national lawmakers from their states will vote,” said a highly placed source who confided in the weekly.
Our source, a two-term law maker, who was part of the plots that brought in former Speakers – Aminu Tambuwal in 2011 and Yakubu Dogara in 2015 – said the party had resolved to give its block vote to Mohammed Bago from Niger State, North Central, as Speaker.
“Bago is our choice; forget about the 60 opposition law makers the APC said had endorsed Femi Gbajabiamila. It is all a ruse, when the chips are down, we will know who really has the control of the House of Representatives.”
His confidence may not be just hot air.
The weekly learnt that contrary to the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Adams Oshiomhole’s claims that the opposition would get nothing, the PDP has asked to head the Public Accounts Committee, one of the Petroleum sectors either upstream or downstream, Communications, MDG, Environment and Power and Works.
Our source said: “We are working to ensure that Tinubu and co. do not take control of the National Assembly. For this, we are backing Bago from Niger State and in return we are asking for the Public Accounts Committee, one of the Petroleum sectors either upstream or downstream, Communications, MDG, Environment and Power and Works.
“They may not be able to grant all, but we will get some, because they are desirous of making us work with them. Oshiomhole has said that opposition will get nothing. But we will ensure that we block Tinubu. We did it in 2011 and 2015. We will do it again.”
On the Senate, our source, who has been in the mix since 2011, said: “The Senate is also not certain for them. All we need is to get about nine radicals from them (APC) and we will be game. Ndume will get in.”
PDP governors have been meeting in Abuja and Seyi Makinde of Oyo State will meet with all PDP national law makers from the South West. After that they would meet at Oyo House in Abuja. As at today he is the only PDP governor from that geo-political zone.
“We (PDP) met throughout the nights of Thursday till early Friday. We are following it up with a meeting, to present our own candidate before them. We will follow it up with a meeting to ratify our position.
“Most of the governors will be in Abuja on Monday (tomorrow) to ensure that the members from their states vote according to plan. That may give us an edge over APC,” said the former lawmaker.
To get into office, only a simple majority is needed. Currently there are 360 members of the House of Representatives with the APC having roughly 211 members; while in the Upper Chamber, the APC also holds sway with approximately 62 to the PDP’s 37.