By OKECHUKWU PEACE
The controversy surrounding the emergence of Bukola Saraki is far from being over as 28 Senators of the All Peoples Congress, APC walked out during a senate session.
The Senators who belonged to the Barnabas Gemade -led Senate Unity Forum have vowed to take a legal action against the emergence of Bukola Saraki on Tuesday as the President of the Senate.
Addressing newsmen shortly after their walk out, they declared that the election of Saraki did not follow due constitutional procedure.
Things became rowdy when Saraki overruled Gemade and Kabiru Marafa both of whom questioned the process that produced the new Senate leadership.
Gemade, a former Peoples Democratic Party national chairman, demanded full integration of the SUF members who were absent from the formal inauguration on Tuesday.
Marafa, who raised a point of order protesting the way and manner Saraki emerged as the Senate president, demanded full investigation.
He said, “The news was that the Senate was inaugurated with 57 senators while 51 senators- elect were absent.
Also Read:Drama As Tinubu’s Wife Shuns Saraki
“The news portrayed me and many of my colleagues as irresponsible members of this hallowed chamber. That we were absent from an event that was announced and which we were to attend with our spouses and well wishers, showed us as irresponsible people.
After they were overruled, the 28 senators, including the APC choice candidate for the Senate Presidency, Ahmed Lawan, went to address journalists. They did not return until the session rose.
In his address, Gemade,who spoke for the forum, said that 51 senators were denied the right to take part in the election of Saraki because they were at the International Conference Centre in Abuja for a scheduled meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said the group had resolved to challenge the “ illegality” in court “since it takes two-third of members to impeach the Senate President, two third of the members should also, have been in attendance before he(Saraki) was elected on Tuesday”
Gemade insisted that the election of Saraki was null and void because “a quorum was not formed , which should be two-third of the senators present.”
He said, “53 senators were out and the remaining 56 were not enough to elect the President of the Senate. That is a clear position that we take. We are not considering the attendance of that day to connote the quorum in the Senate because many Senators came there after the event was done.”
Saraki had after his election on Tuesday administered oath of office and allegiance on 75 senators.
When he was elected, there were 23 APC senators and 34 PDP senators in attendance. But when the election of his deputy(Ike Ekweremadu, a PDP lawmaker) was being conducted, the number rose to 75.
But at about 8.30pm on Wednesday, Gemade, Lawan and 26 other members of the forum gathered at the Senate chamber waiting for Saraki to formally swear them in as senators.
The senators, after the votes and proceedings of the previous legislative day were adopted, took turn to take their oaths by reading it out aloud and appending their signatures.