Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
Senators on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Tuesday denied reports that they were planning to commence impeachment moves against President Muhammadu Buhari.
The senators, in a statement jointly signed by leaders of PDP caucus which include Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio, Minority Whip, Philip Aduda and Deputy Minority Whip, ‘Biodun Olujimi, described any claim of impeachment plot against President Buhari as “false, baseless and unfounded.”
The denial came against the background of a letter from a former Chairman of PDP Board of Trustees (BoT), Chief Tony Anenih, advising the Chairman, National Caretaker Committee of the party, Senator Ahmed Makarfi, to “dissuade the PDP Caucus in the National Assembly from participating in the alleged ‘ill advised’ adventure of removing President Muhammadu Buhari from office.”
But the PDP senators debunked the allegation insisting that there was nowhere the issue of impeachment against the president was ever discussed among PDP senators. They urged Nigerians to ignore such rumour as it was capable of creating disaffection in the polity.
The senators further said they were more pre-occupied with enormous challenges confronting the economy, pointing out that the comment of the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, while briefing senators last Thursday that the economy was in “technical recession” was of more concern to them, hence, the need to join hands with the executive to revive the economy.
The statement reads: “For the avoidance of doubt, we wish to state categorically that the said impeachment plot is false, baseless and unfounded. The PDP Senate Caucus had neither discussed nor participated in any discussion or congregation on the issue of impeaching and/or serving notice of impeachment on President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR. Hence, we advise Nigerians generally to be cautious in spinning and/or peddling rumours capable of heating up the polity.
“By the admission of the Hon. Minister of Finance of the Federal Republic of Nigeria when she appeared before the Senate on Thursday, July 21, 2016 at plenary, the Nigerian economy is technically in recession. Therefore, this is no time for politicking. Rather we should all join hands together to address the problems of unemployment, hunger, poverty and insecurity currently ravaging our country.
“The downturn in the economy is of more concern to us as PDP senators who are known patriots. Nigerians are passing through very difficult times and our immediate concern is how to assist in proffering solutions to the economic crises that we are presently faced with.
“Before the Senate proceeded on a six-week recess on Thursday, July 21, 2016 there was no such item as impeachment of President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR on the agenda of the PDP Senate Caucus or that of the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
The senators pledged to co-operate with their counterparts in the All Progressives Congress (APC) to make laws that would elevate the living standard of all Nigerians.
Anenih had, in a four-page letter to Makarfi, dated July 15, 2016, warned against the removal of Buhari. He said he was persuaded that the time was neither right nor the reasons compelling enough to contemplate the impeachment of the President.
In the letter, titled: “The PDP Caucus in the National Assembly and the threat to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari”, he urged Makarfi to personally lead the process of consultation with PDP members in the National Assembly, with a view to getting them to play a patriotic, rather than partisan role, at this time of national economic and social uncertainty.