National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole has dismissed the claim by Senate President, Bukola Saraki that President Muhammadu Buhari gave juicy federal appointments to only Katsina and Lagos States. Addressing journalists after a meeting with his supporters in Ilorin, after his defection to the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Saraki had lamented that Kwara and other states were marginalized by the current government.
Saraki said, “The Federal Government appointed over 200 persons into juicy offices without allotting any slot to me or (Speaker, House of Representatives, Yakubu) Dogara. “Everything went to Katsina, Katsina, Lagos, Lagos. If not for the love I have for Nigeria, we would have scattered everything. They don’t want us in their party. They don’t like us in Kwara. “What I am after is for my people to enjoy dividend of democracy. I want us to be in the party that will love my people. Wherever we are, we will win elections. The governor told me he’s tired of the APC.”
Responding at a press conference at the party headquarters in Abuja on Friday, Oshiomhole declared that Saraki was totally wrong. His words: “He alleged that Buhari gave out over 200 juicy appointments without allocating some to him and he chooses to speak for the Speaker of the House of Representatives that he was also not given. He lamented that he was not given a share of the so called 200 juicy positions. “My question is, giving Saraki the Senate President juicy position; does that coincide with the Nigerian project? Or the interest of the people of Kwara State of his Senatorial zone. At no time did he refer to the interest of the people of his constituency or the people of Nigeria.
“The second reason he gave was that he was being persecuted. That is alleged persecution of his person and not his people. He never pretended that any of these actions had anything, to do with the people of Nigeria, but his person. “I think the governor of Kwara State was more explicit in collaborating his claim when he said that he as governor and Saraki as senate President were being linked to armed robbery cases. Again, that has nothing to do with the Nigerian project or the Kwara people. “What is the truth? Who linked Senator Saraki to armed robbery? Was it the federal government or arrested armed robbers? It is the armed robbers that alleged that the weapons with which they carried out the operation were procured for them by senate President. This is contained in the police report which is no longer a secret.
“He has not denied knowledge of these people since some of them were captured in his entourage during his condolence visit. So if armed robbers linked the name of the senate president, is the APC or the government to blame? “A crime that led to the killing of about 35 persons cannot be dismissed with a wave of hand and in any jurisdiction, when your name is linked to such heinous crime, people don’t clap for you. It is the duty of the security agents to investigate and establish whether they are valid or invalid.
“So he was linked to armed robbery, which cannot be an offence of the government or the APC. The best defence I have heard is that the robbers said that he did not ask them to use the weapon for armed robbery. “In support of my thesis that Saraki has never acted in the national interest, my final submission is on the way he adjourned the senate. The senate calendar is not a secret to the presiding officer and the calendar that was known was that the senate was going to adjourn on a Thursday.
“So, I submit that Saraki’s action were calculated to undermine democracy. Those who fought for democracy did not do it so that it can be run at the mercies of a senate president whose interest is clearly at variance with national interest. There was a request for virement which was also not considered.”