The Senate yesterday had a stormy closed-door session as some senators threatened to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari.
The threat to impeach the president, it was learnt, is being championed by senators loyal to Senate President Bukola Saraki and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu.
The senators, under the aegis of Like Minds, are angry that Saraki and Ekweremadu have been put on trial for alleged forgery of the Senate Standing Rules 2015 (as amended), which they described as an “internal affair” of the Upper Chamber.
However, what sparked yesterday’s stormy session was a brief by the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters, David Umar.
Sen. Umar explained how the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), was summoned twice but he “ignored” the Senate committee, which he described as “disrespectful and an affront”.
The aggrieved senators asked the chamber to issue a warrant of arrest against the AGF to compel him to appear before the Senate.
“A Senator suggested that the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim K. Idris be mandated to arrest him but some of our colleagues said the IGP will not carry out the order because the matter is being influenced by the Presidency”, said a senator on the condition of anonymity.
It was gathered that at this point, a suggestion was made by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP, Abia South) that President Buhari should be impeached if the Executive fails to toe the path of dialogue in the Senate rules forgery case.
“The Executive should toe the path of dialogue or else the Senate will go for the jugular”, Abaribe was quoted by the senator as saying.
He added that a member of the Unity Forum (Anti-Saraki senators) asked: “What is the meaning of the jugular? Tell us; we don’t know what you mean”.
In response, the Abia senator stated unequivocally, “Impeachment, of course”.
Another senator, who corroborated the above events, said the suggestion infuriated members of the majority All Progressives Congress, APC, resulting in angry exchanges with their counterparts from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The sources said the rowdy session lasted for about 30 minutes and it took the intervention of former Senate President, David Mark to calm frayed nerves.
Also at the session, it was learnt that Senator Dino Melaye (APC, Kogi West) allegedly threatened to assault Senator Oluremi Tinubu (APC, Lagos Central), who challenged his suggestion that senators who went to Court over the forgery of Senate rules be suspended.
Melaye was quoted as saying: “Since they are not ready to withdraw the case, they should be suspended. They were around when resolution was passed that our rules book was not forged”.
Senator Tinubu was said to have asked why Melaye should always be given the floor at every closed-session to threaten other Senators and reminded her colleagues that they all represent their various senatorial districts and that there was no reason for anybody to be threatened.
At this point, it was learnt that Melaye was hurled insults on Senator Tinubu, wife of the APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, calling her unprintable names.
Not content with his tongue-lash of the former Lagos State first lady, the Kogi Senator was said to have sprang from his seat and was charging toward Senator Tinubu until he was blocked by some Senators.
Melaye, however, denies this account of events, saying he never called his colleague names.
“I only cautioned her for mentioning my name in her presentation during the closed session because when I made my presentation I didn’t mention any body’s name”, he clarified.