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No Senator submitted defection letter – Lawan’s aide

Ola Awoniyi, a media aide to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has said that no defection letter has been submitted to his principal by any Senator as claimed by some media outlets.

Some news organisations (not PUNCH) on Friday reported that at least 12 senators from the ruling party had submitted their defection letters to the Senate president who had refused to read them over fear of removing him in the upper chamber.

Awoniyi, in a statement, however, denied the allegations, saying no letter had been submitted to Lawan.

The statement read, “We have seen a story on social media and some online newspapers purporting that the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, is sitting on letters from some senators allegedly intimating him of their defections from the All Progressives Congress.

“The story insinuated that Lawan is sitting on the purported letters to protect his position as the President of the Senate. We hereby state categorically that the story is utter falsehood as there is no such letter before the Senate President.”

The report mentioned only Senator Adamu Bulkachuwa as one of the affected senators.

It added, “Obviously, the purveyors of the syndicated lies had not even bothered to confirm from the Distinguished Senator if and when he submitted any such letter to the Senate President. It is public knowledge that the Senate President has always promptly read out at plenaries letters by senators defecting from one party to another.

“The Senate President is sufficiently knowledgeable about the rules and workings of the Senate and has been discharging his responsibilities within the ambit of those rules.

“That is why he has continued to enjoy the confidence and full cooperation of his fellow Distinguished Senators, irrespective of party affiliations.”

Lawan’s aide added that such rumours were just meant to sow the seed of discord in the parliament.

The statement added, “Apparently, some vested interests want to magnify challenges to sow seeds of discord in the Parliament in promotion of their selfish agenda.

“We wish to reiterate that the Senate President is not withholding or sitting on any letter of whatever content from any of his Distinguished Senator colleagues.

“Therefore, any story purporting such exists only in the imagination of the mischief makers circulating it.”

The PUNCH reports that there has been tension in the Senate since oppositions staged a walkout on the Senate President on Wednessday after which they called for the impeachment of the president, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), over the state of insecurity in the country.

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