No plan to impeach Buhari – SENATE
ABUJA — The Senate, yesterday, rebuffed insinuations of a plot to initiate impeachment proceedings against President Muhammadu Buhari, saying such suggestions were speculative. The Senate’s disavowal came as Senator Dino Melaye also denied the claim but confirmed the altercation between himself and Senator Remi Tinubu, which he claimed was sparked by her use of provocative words against him.
Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, yesterday, said it would not speak on the alleged impeachment threats against President Buhari. National chairman of the party, Senator Ahmed Makarfi, said the issue remained entirely within the ambit of the legislature. The Chief Chekwas Okorie-led United Peoples Party, UPP, was, however, not restrained in its reaction, describing any impeachment plot as satanic and subversive. The Senate in a statement by its spokesperson, Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, said the comments credited to the National Secretary of the APC, Mai Bala Buni, could give credibility to a news item which members of the public had disregarded. He said: ”We expected the party to, at least, explore all the options open to it to verify that piece of fabrication which is only the figment of the imagination of the writers and their sponsors. “It should be clear to the APC leadership that if there is any truth to that story, it should have been credited to a particular senator who was at the executive session. “It is evident from our proceedings of yesterday (Wednesday) that the Senate itself was shocked that such a fabrication, which constitutes a breach of the privileges of the senators, was published and that was why we mandated our Committee on Ethics, Privileges, and Public Petitions to investigate the source and circumstances leading to the emergence of such a fabrication. “We will like to assure the party that the Senate, as an institution, values the present democracy in our country and will not do anything that will undermine or weaken the system.” Okorie, Olujimi, Abaribe react Deputy Minority Whip, Senator Biodun Olujimi, also, yesterday, took a swipe at the APC on the alleged impeachment threat, saying the ruling party itself was confused. “I do not understand what they are saying,” he said. Also speaking to Vanguard, Chairman, Senate Committee on Information and National Orientation, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP, Abia South), who noted that there was nothing to discuss on impeachment as there was nothing of such, said the APC was becoming “very apprehensive.” Chief Okorie, on his part, cautioned the Senate against wielding the impeachment weapon. Okorie, in a statement made available to newsmen in Enugu yesterday, said: ”The threats emanating from some persons in the National Assembly to commence impeachment proceedings against President Muhammadu Buhari for unspecified impeachable offences at this point in time are satanic, subversive and dangerous. “It should be erased completely from the minds of those contemplating such move. Any such act of vengeance will be most unpopular, unpatriotic and condemnable. All hands must be on deck to salvage our country from its present state of economic downturn, excruciating poverty and security challenges. “In the spirit of separation of powers, as clearly defined in the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended, it behoves on the National Assembly and its leadership to submit themselves to the judicial process with regard to the on-going trial of some top officers of the Senate on forgery accusation.”