Senate President, Ahmed Ibrahim Lawan has made it clear that he would never lobby the President to sign any bill which the National Assembly passes into law and transmitted for Presidential assent.
Answering reporters’ questions yesterday, November 22, at the Presidential villa, Abuja shortly after an audience with President Muhammadu Buhari, Senator Ahmed said: “You see, there is no need for you to lobby for any bill to be signed. “Ashe chairman of the National Assembly, you are simply a presiding officer, and you coordinate the views of your colleagues.
“The majority of my colleagues in the Senate and in the House of Representatives say this is where they want the bill to go.
“This is the provision they want in Section 52, 3 rather. So I don’t have to come and say Mr. President sign this.”
The Senate President, who spoke on the new amended electoral law, especially the direct primaries in the choice of party’s flag bearer for election, stressed that the President has his own processes when a bill is sent to him from the National Assembly.
“I’m sure he has the Attorney General and others to advise him. So why should I stress myself to say, just sign?
“We expect that he will sign, but how he does that is his calling. And I think we should allow him to just follow the processes he is used to, but the expectation of members of National Assembly is that the bill is signed.
He observed that it is normal in politics to have disagreement on issues tabled for discussion, but that the best way to resolve it is for people to engage.
“I always believe, and I have conversed for this, that National Assembly members are major stakeholders, governors of APC, major stakeholders. ” And in fact, the presidency is a major stakeholder: it is the biggest stakeholder because it runs the administration, and our party must always try to bring everybody together.
“I don’t think there will be any day that you will have a political issue that everybody will say the same thing about it that agrees with you without any amendment.
“So when we have any section of a party disagreeing with something we should be engaging that’s why we are politicians, we must have that kind of a platform where we discuss the issues. ” Let’s understand each other, and then we make whatever it is that will make this disagreement minimized. Or maybe where possible, eliminate it completely. “So I don’t think it is right to say that governors have disagreed. Maybe some governor’s might have said they don’t like it this way. But that’s normal. So it’s for us to engage and engage and engage.”
On whether he thought direct primaries is the best way to go, Senator Ahmed said: “I don’t have a personal opinion here, because I’m not here alone. So I don’t have a personal opinion.
“My opinion is that of the National Assembly Members.”