Federal lawmakers disagree over implementation of 2014 national conference report 

Abudulahi Adamu

Claims by the Chairman of the Northern Senators Forum (NSF), Abudulahi Adamu that it was wrong for their Southern counterparts to demand the implementation of the 2014 National Conference report has been dismissed as the thought of confusion and ignorance of the issues at stake.

Adamu had declared in Katsina where Northern Senators held their retreat, that the demand was a fallacy borne out of ignorance, wondering how President Muhammadu should implement the report of a conference in which he did not participate.

He spoke in a reaction to the communiqué issued by the Southern Senators at their retreat in Calabar last month, which among other things asked President Buhari to convene a meeting of stakeholders on the conference report.

But in a statement at the weekend in Abuja, Chairman of the Southern Senators Forum (SSF), Hope Uzodumma dismissed Adamu’s claims as unfounded and a product of thorough confusion and crass ignorance of the issues at stake.

Uzodimma said Adamu’s actions and utterances smacked of a town union leader who out of unnecessary zealotry to protect his union and who erroneously sees the President as a member of his union, embarked on an indecent haste to speak for the President in the name of protecting his union.

He argued that if his Northern colleagues had taken time to study the communiqué, he would have realised that it was drawn from the position papers submitted by eminent Nigerians from across the country, including the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), and Minister for Justice, Governor of Jigawa State and Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah.

Besides, Uzodimma argued that the communiqué merely asked President Buhari to convene a meeting of governors and the leadership of the national and state assembles to consider the report and forward same to the National Assembly for debate.

He wondered why Adamu should be in a hurry to defend a President who has not complained about the communiqué asking: “Has Adamu forgotten that the President’s party and the All Progressives Congress (APC) promised restructuring in their manifesto?

He recalled that even Adamu admitted that the 2014 Conference report treated restructuring extensively and asked: “What is wrong in asking the President whose party promised restructuring to consider sending a report on the same subject to the National Assembly?”

On Adamu’s argument that the President was not part of the 2014 Conference and therefore, could implement its recommendations, Uzodimma said that argument was laughable and asked “why is the President implementing the 1999 constitution or even international treaties? Was he part of any of them?“Let me inform my colleague that Southern Senators met in Calabar on a well planned retreat on how to deepen national unity through devolution of powers,” he added.

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Abudulahi AdamuNSF
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