Former Senate Leader, Mohammed Ali Ndume, will compete for the presidency of the ninth senate despite the fact that the leadership of his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has endorsed the current senate leader, Ahmed Lawan. Ndume presented a 9 point agenda to the media on Tuesday.
- In a play to appeal to PDP lawmakers and supporters of the outgoing senate president, Ndume promised to improve on the work done by the Bukola Saraki-led 8th Assembly.
- Make Senate President’s seat less attractive through the reduction of unnecessary privileges attached to the seat.
- He said he aims to ensure the independence of the legislature but would “work harmoniously and inter-dependently with the Executive.”
- Run a more transparent senate.
- Revise tax laws.
- Quick passage of annual budgets (not to exceed 90 days.)
Quick Take: Ndume’s agenda is currently lacking concrete details for the most part. But his pledge to ensure early passage of budget is in line with the hopes of the presidency.
Internal Conflict in APC: Ndume’s decision to go against the party’s decision is a clear indication of tension in the ruling party. The National Leader, Bola Tinubu, had previously warned members of the party to either uphold discipline by supporting the party’s selected candidate, or walk away. Party chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, has made similar pronouncements. The party had also cautioned Ndume personally, for remain dogged in his ambition, and calling out the party’s National Chairman.