Senator Maidoki cited equity as the reason PDP lawmakers are canvassing support for the North Central zone as other zones are represented in the leadership of the Red Chamber.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) caucus in the Senate has resolved to canvass support for the North Central Zone for the position of Senate Minority Leader.
The lawmakers decided this during a crucial meeting on the replacement of the Senate Minority Leader and Minority Whip held on Wednesday, in the office of Senator Garba Musa Maidoki (PDP, Kebbi South).
Recall that the Minority Leader of the Senate, Senator Simon Mwadkwon, and the Senate Minority Whip, Senator Darlington Nwokocha were both sacked by the Appeal Court in October.
In Mwadkwon’s case, the court directed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct a fresh election in the Plateau North Senatorial District within 90 days.
However, Nwokocha, who represented Abia Central on the platform of the Labour Party was replaced by Augustine Akobundu of the Peoples Democratic Party on Wednesday, in line with the ruling of the court.
Present in the meeting were Senators Aminu Waziri Tambuwal (PDP, Sokoto South), Abdul Ningi (PDP, Bauchi Central), Natasha Akpoti-Uduaghan (PDP, Kogi Central), Abba Morro (PDP, Benue South), Aminu Dankwambo (PDP, Gombe North), Francis Fadahunsi (PDP, Osun East), Osita Ngwu (PDP, Enugu West), Ned Nwoko (PDP, Delta North) and Adamu Aliero (PDP, Kebbi Central), among others.
The lawmakers also resolved to convey their position to other lawmakers in the other opposition parties in the Red Chamber
Speaking with journalists after the meeting, Maidoki explained why the PDP senators settled for North Central. “Everyone has agreed that the North Central should have that position for equity.
“Whether you are in PDP or APC, the Senate President is from the South-South, the Deputy Senate President is from North West, the Senate Leader is from South West, the Chief Whip is from North East. So, the only zone where you do not have a leadership position is North Central, after the ouster of the last Minority Leader.
“We have all agreed that the North Central should have it for equity. Even though the highest number of PDP senators are from the North West, we are on the same page, we are unanimous, we have agreed, and those who want the same position we have persuaded.
“This was just driven by equity for every zone. In any case, it is only a position of trust, he has only one vote when it comes to voting, and the Senate President has only one vote.
“We don’t want to make the same mistake we made the last time, we refused to take a position on time and some people decided for us.
“Hence we had to hold this emergency meeting when we realised that a vacuum exist in the minority leadership, and in the past weeks, nothing had been done, so we had to move quickly.
“The Senate President was here this morning and we assured him that it was a PDP affair and we want to make sure we chose our leader who can contribute robustly to debates in the Senate.
“It’s not about change or overturning anyone, it’s about the leadership vacuum in the minority and we don’t want anyone to choose for us,” he stated.