The ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is working behind the scenes to plant one of its members as a new Speaker of the House of Representatives as part of an elaborate plan to undermine the incumbent, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, who recently left the PDP to join the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Three sources at the PDP secretariat and the National Assembly told SaharaReporters that officials at the Presidency as well as hawkish elements within the party were collaborating on a plan to prop up an alternative speaker in order to create an effective revolt against Mr. Tambuwal’s continued role as head of the House.
“The party’s simple majority will just announce a new Speaker and rubbish Aminu Tambuwal,” said one of the sources.
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One other source disclosed, however, that many PDP representatives were reluctant to do the bidding of the Presidency, especially after a botched plan hatched by the Presidency to impeach Mr. Tambuwal in a Gestapo-style operation last week. “[The] majority of members are reluctant because of what happened last week, but the Presidency is still insisting that a new Speaker must be installed, no matter the consequences,” said the source.
“There is a directive that Tambuwal must be uprooted from being Speaker because the Presidency knows the implications of allowing him to stay. They are insisting that the PDP members should nominate one of them since they have [a] simple majority in the House. And that they should challenge Tambuwal’s stool since APC has no majority in the House,” one source disclosed.
He added, “Some members are skeptical in view of their relationship with Tambuwal. And some of them are also not satisfied with President Jonathan’s high-handedness, but the PDP is using that to ascertain their loyalty to the party and may threaten them.”
Our sources said there had been a series of meetings between the party and prominent PDP members of the House of Representatives in order to advance the Presidency’s goal of thwarting Mr. Tambuwal’s speakership.