Former national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who is now a leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje, has challenged the former interim national chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande, to provide proof of his claims that some northern elements and oil barons sponsored the election of Senator Bukola Saraki as Senate president.
Baraje, in a statement on Tuesday, said Akande was being economical with the truth with his claims, adding that the former Osun State governor knew those behind the crisis in the National Assembly.
Baraje said he was worried that President Muhammadu Buhari was being fed with half truths on the issue of National Assembly crisis, adding that leaders like Akande were misrepresenting the truth.
“I do not know where Chief Akande and his cohorts are getting this unsubstantiated information they are circulating. We challenge them to provide proof and let Nigerians make their judgment.
“Akande and co believe that they have exclusive right to determine who occupy what position in today’s Nigeria and whoever tries to challenge their position must be subjected to savage attack in the media. That tactic is definitely undemocratic.
“I have known Chief Akande to be an honest man. I got the shock of my life when he alleged that I had a meeting in my house with ‘some old and new PDP members, with a view to hijacking the National Assembly’ through the aspiration of Dr Bukola Saraki as the Senate president. I have been quiet as a leader so as to not to be seen as taking side because of my closeness to Dr Saraki, else people will read meaning to it,” he said.
He denied ever holding any meeting where it was decided that the old PDP elements would hijack the Senate election process.
“My fears have now been confirmed with Akande’s statement. It is my prayer that the president should strengthen his information gathering network, so as to have a clear and true picture of what is happening.
“I am happy to state that the former governor of Kwara State enjoys the support of the critical constituencies that he needs to be president of the Senate, particularly that of the good people of Nigeria…
“To start talking about a so-called northern rebellion and conspiracy against the South-West and Yoruba at this stage of our national development, when the nation just emerged unscathed from a national election which many predicted would lead to its dismemberment, is unbecoming of a national leader like Chief Akande,” he added.
Baraje added that Akande’s press statement was targeted at setting agenda for the proposed meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) and National Working Committee (NWC) and other organs of the party, which they thought will hold on Tuesday, June 30.
Source: Nigerian Tribune