Senate President Bukola Saraki has ordered the cancellation of the senate’s resumption scheduled for Tuesday, 29th January, 2019.
In a statement signed by the Clerk of the Senate, Mr. Nelson Ayewoh on evening of Monday 28 January said,
“This is to inform all Distinguished Senators of the National Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria that the resumption in Plenary scheduled for tomorrow, Tuesday, 29th January 2019 has been cancelled. The scheduled date of the resumption in Plenary earlier fixed for Tuesday, 19th February, 2019, remains, please.”
The statement offered no reason for the cancellation.
The Senate tried to recall its members for meeting on Tuesday to discuss the raging battle between the executive and judicial arms of government sparked off by President Buhari’s suspension of the Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Walter Onnoghen – which a growing national and international consensus say is unconstitutional.
At least one opposition leader, Chief Ralph Nwosu of African Democratic Congress, ADC, went as far as calling on the National Assembly to remove the president and his vice and install Senate President as head of government. “Committing an offence against the nation, ridiculing the constitution and continuously denigrating other arms of government and the people of this great nation are clear manifestations of insanity. Therefore, it is less reckless for the legislative house to take over power without going through impeachment procedure to save this democracy,” he said.
Saraki had earlier called the President’s action a coup against democracy, saying Buhari has “initiated a process the consequence of which nobody can predict.”
Faced with the intense negative reactions from the public, presidency feared the senators may be under pressure when they reconvene to sanction the president and it quickly called for a meeting of the senate caucus of the ruling party, APC with the president on Monday evening at Aso Villa.
Pundits claims the Senate President then in a deft maneuver ordered the cancellation of the scheduled senate meeting for Tuesday and instead has taken the upper chamber in a detour to the Supreme Court filing, a motion for the court to determine if President Muhammadu Buhari acted within his powers by suspending Justice Onnoghen.
The Nigerian social media swirled with varied viewpoints, some applauding the senate president who several commentators claim got a wind of the offensive by the presidency to turn the tables against him and use the Senators to impeach the senate president, Mr. Saraki himself.
BREAKING: APC Senators currently meeting at Aso Drive. If you hurry, you’ll still meet them there. The House apparently belongs to Mr. General Buhari..
— I am Baba Idris (@babaidris090) August 7, 2018
After the president’s meeting with his party caucus, APC chairman Adams Oshiomhole, speaking to the press only said it was a “nice meeting”. He claimed the meeting was called just to enable the president and the senators and party’s senatorial candidates to “compare and share notes” on the campaigns.
The battle for the “rescue of democracy” now shifts to the embattled judiciary and the Supreme Court – which is the highest adjudicative agent in the land, to untangle the legal web of events and intrigues of the past two weeks and bring back constitutional order to the country it heads inevitably to critical national polls only 18 days away.
When I tell you APC isn't such a smart party, believe it.
Saraki announced resumption to discuss Buhari's breach of constitution, APC started mobilising Senators to impeach him.
Saraki cancelled and took the matter to the Supreme Court for interpretation.
Saraki 100 – APC 0 pic.twitter.com/VHxHyNXQym
— Demola Olarewaju (@DemolaRewaju) January 28, 2019
$5m gone just like that!!!
Saraki is wicked walahi!
56 APC Senators got $75k each to impeach Saraki tomorrow. Smart Saraki called off Senate sitting!
Na so $5 million ($4.2m for 56 Senators… https://t.co/l52jAJvBCY
— Lere Olayinka – Aresa 1 (@OlayinkaLere) January 28, 2019