Under me, Buhari will be challenged – Senate President Lawan vows

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Ahmed Lawan, President of the 9th Senate has vowed that the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will be challenged to proof the legislature under him is not a rubber stamp as insinuated in some quarters.

Mr Lawan stated this on Friday while addressing Women Parliamentarians, led by Joy Emordi, a former federal lawmaker.

Critics of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) are quick to refer to the top lawmaker as a rubber stamp of the executive led by President Muhammadu Buhari, considering the circumstances that led to his emergence as the leader of the legislative arm of government.

Mr Buhari and his party had explored all available means at its disposal to ensure Mr Lawan succeeded the immediate past President of the 8th Senate, Bukola Saraki,

Although the top lawmaker was tipped for the position during the formation of the 8th Senate in 2015, Mr Saraki thwarted the plan, despite belonging to the ruling party, by forming alliance with the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to produce the past legislature.

As the formation of the 9th Senate drew near, Buhari played a vital role in ensuring the preferred candidate of his party clinched the position. Another lawmaker who was interested in succeeding Saraki traded his ambition for the withdrawal of corruption charges against him on the orders of the president who claims the fight against corruption knows no political inclination.

Addressing his visitors, the Senate President said he will never be a rubber stamp of the president.

“Yes, I believe in President Buhari as a person and I believe in my party, the APC, but I believe that our problems as Nigerians are Nigerian problems. They are neither APC nor PDP problems, they are Nigerian problems that require Nigerian solution. So, we have to work together,” Mr Lawan was quoted by his media aide, Mohammed Isa, to have told his guests during their visit.

“We will be there for the executive arm of government all the time in moving this country forward. We are going to challenge the executive in a manner that is decent but decisive. As a minister, you have to do your ministerial job well.

“We will make government appointees to do what is required of them. We have to deal with the issues confronting us. It is not going to be easy, but we have to build a relationship that have mutual respect, collaboration and partnership. It is achievable,” a statement Mr Isa added.