Senate president Bukola Saraki has reacted to the recent statement by the National leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, saying he(Saraki) left the party because he wasn’t sure of automatic ticket.
According to Saraki, he has always avoided joining issues in the media with Tinubu because of the respect he has for him. However, he says he needs to correct “a wrong, false and mischievous impression about the reasons for my decision to exit the All Progressives Congress (APC).”
Saraki, therefore gives reasons for his exit from the ruling party, why his relationship with Tinubu isn’t how it should be. Take a look:
National Assembly was not carried along
I have been consistent in my complaints to all leaders of the APC, including Tinubu, that a situation where the National Assembly is not constructively engaged or carried along in key policy decisions, particularly those that will eventually require legislative approval, is not in the best interest of the nation.
No genuine leader of the legislature will be comfortable that the Presidency will simply write a terse letter to the National Assembly on key issues which the federal legislature is expected to later deliberate upon and give its approval.
The Buhari administration consistently treats the legislature with contempt and acts as if the lawmaking body should be an appendage of the Executive. To me, this is unacceptable.
People who worked hard were dumped
In the same way, I find it very objectionable that many stakeholders who worked strenuously to get the administration into office have now been excluded in the government and not consulted on key decisions as necessary and expected. In fact, some of them are treated as pariahs. A party that ignores justice, equity and inclusion as basic pre-conditions for peace, unity and stability cannot sustain its membership and leadership.
On why Tinubu supports Buhari
Tinubu himself will recall that during the various meetings he had with me at the time he was pursuing reconciliation within the APC, I raised all the above issues. I can also vividly recall that he himself always expressed his displeasure with the style of the government and also mentioned that he had equally suffered disrespect from the same government which we all worked to put in office.
I also made the point that whatever travails I have gone through in the last three years belong to the past and will not shape my decisions now and in the future.
However, during those meetings, the point of disagreement between Tinubu and I is that while I expressed my worries that there is nothing on ground to assure me that the administrative style and attitude would change in the next four years in a manner that will enable us to deliver the positive changes we promised to our people, he (Tinubu) expressed a strong opinion that he would rather ‘support a Buhari on the hospital stretcher’ to get a second term because in 2023, power will shift to the South-west.
This viewpoint of Tinubu’s was not only expressed to me but to several of my colleagues. So much for acting in national interest.
It is clear that while my own decision is based on protecting the collective national interest, Tinubu will rather live with the identified inadequacies of the government for the sake of fulfilling and preserving his presidential ambition in 2023.
This new position of Tinubu has only demonstrated inconsistency – particularly when one reviews his antecedents over the years.
Why he no longer has a good relationship with Tinubu
Again, let me reiterate my position that my uncertain and complex relationship with Tinubu has been continually defined by the event of 2014 when myself and other leaders of the APC opposed the Muslim-Muslim ticket arrangement about to be foisted on the APC for the 2015 polls.
It should be noted that he has not forgotten the fact that I took the bull by the horns and told him that in the interest of the country, he should accept the need for the party to present a balanced ticket for the 2015 General Elections in terms of religion and geo-political zones.
Since that time he has been very active; plotting at every point to undermine me, both within and outside the National Assembly.