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The calculated attempt by the new Leader of the Senate, Senator Ahmed Lawan, to take over the constitutionally role of the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, on Thursday, January 12, has been rejected by the Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio.
Akpabio, challenged Lawan, that he is not constitutionally empowered to run the affairs of the Senate.
Lawan, had while appreciating members of All Progressives Congress, APC, caucus, said: “I will run the affairs of the Senate, for the benefit of all.”
His comments were rebuffed by Akpabio, who insisted that Saraki was in charge. He added, that Lawan was appointed to manage the APC caucus of the Red Chamber, and not the Senate in its entirety.
“I want to say that Senator Lawan is the Majority Leader, and he cannot run the Senate. The Senate President is in charge, and he will run the affairs of this house,” Akpabio retorted.
Meanwhile, Lawan has called on his colleagues, to cooperate with him in his new capacity to deliver the dividends of democracy to Nigerians. He urged them to work in a bi-partisan manner, for the interest of all Nigerians.

“The Eight Senate started on a shaky foundation. This Senate will end on a solid, stable, and successful foundation. I thank the APC caucus for having confidence and trust in my judgment, and ability to serve as Leader of the Senate.
“I ask the opposition, that what the APC caucus has done is for all of us. I am not a Leader for the APC caucus; I am a leader of the Senate. It is the will of God and religious people; we believe in destiny. We have accepted our fate, and we have accepted to work for the betterment of Nigerians,” Lawan stated.
Speaking on behalf of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, caucus, Akpabio stated that with the elevation of Senator Lawan, “all the grumbling and disaffection affecting the Eight Senate would be brought to an end.
“We are delighted. We want to note that in spite of the situations of this and that, the Senate is focused on national issues. We are implementing issues on bi-partisan basis. We will continue to remain bi-partisan, where the interests of Nigerians are concerned,” he said.
Saraki, however, assured Lawan of his colleagues’ support.‎ He also commended the former Senate Leader, Senator Ali Ndume, for his service and for his statesmanship in accepting his fate‎.

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