November 21, (THEWILL) – Lawmakers at the Nigerian Senate engaged in a shouting match on Tuesday, following the announcement of Abba Moro (PDP, Benue South) as Minority Leader and Osita Ngwu (PDP, Enugu West) as Minority Whip.
The positions became vacant after the Court of Appeal sacked the former occupants, Senator Simon Davou Mwadkwon (PDP, Plateau North) and Darlington Nwokocha (LP, Abia Central) respectively.
During Tuesday’s plenary, Akpabio announced Moro and Ngwu as replacements for the two vacant positions.
According to the Senate President, 41 minority Senators signed the document endorsing Moro as minority leader while 30 backed Ngwu for the minority whip seat.
But in swift opposition to the choice of Moro and Ngwu, Senator Okechukwu Ezea (LP, Enugu North), protested the absence of his party in the minority leadership, describing the arrangement as an injustice against other minority parties.
“How can the PDP take three minority leadership seats? This is unfair, unjust, and unacceptable,” he said.
The Senate after that degenerated into a rowdy session with LP lawmakers rejecting their party’s exclusion in the minority leadership.
Amid the uproar, Senator Tony Nwoyi (LP, Anambra North) accused Akpabio of picking minority leaders for the opposition parties.
“How can you be choosing minority leaders for us? Are we your slaves?” Nwoyi tackled the Senate President.
Addressing the opposition lawmakers after the rowdy session, Akpabio, who dismissed the claim of his interfering in the affairs of the opposition, said he announced the names forwarded to him by the opposition caucus and that it would be unfair not to respect the voice of the majority.
“All we need to produce a leader is a simple majority. What’s the reason for not agreeing with the position of the majority? 41 minority Senators signed for Abah Moro and 30 signed for Osita Ngwu. They have the majority. It would be unfair for me not to announce them after getting a majority of support. My job is not to work with individual opinion but with the majority of positions,” he said.