A motion to debate President Muhammadu Buhari’s Democracy Day speech at the senate was blocked by majority of senators on Thursday.
A Plateau PDP senator, Istifanus Dung Gyang, brought the motion to debate the speech which is “already in the public domain” as a matter of urgent national importance. But before he could explain what part of the lengthy speech he wanted to focus the debate on, the new senate president Ahmed Lawan, cut him short and asked for the consent of senators to debate the speech.
Senators however voted against it.
Ekwunife also overruled: Gyang was not the only senator who wanted to have a debate on aspects of the president’s speech. An Anambra senator (also of the PDP), Uche Ekwunife, said she wanted to present a motion on the speech but was advised by the senate president to present it as an amendment to Gyang’s motion. She requested to present hers since the earlier motion was not debated.
Senate president Lawan however said that her point of order was belated as the senate had moved to the first order of the day. He asked her to present her motion on another legislative day.