ACF slams Presidency, Senate over face-off, asks them to sheath their swords, tackle Nigeria’s challenges

Arewa Consultative Forum

Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) on Thursday appealed to both the Presidency and the Senate to sheath their swords and work together to address the numerous challenges confronting Nigeria.

Both arms of government had engaged each other in what could best be described as power show by one giving orders to the other  and the order refusing to carry out such directives.

For instance, the Senate had requested the Presidency to sack the Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mr Ibrahim Magu having purportedly failed integrity test and consequently lost the opportunity of getting confirmation as substantive chairman of EFCC but the Presidency had been silent on the issue.

The Senate in a fight back had refused to work on the list of resident Electoral Commissioners sent by the Presidency to the upper chamber in protest against the Presidency’s refusal to sack Magu.

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The flexing of muscle has been affecting governance.

Uncomfortable by the development, the ACF, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Muhammad Ibrahim Biu said, Nigeria is faced with insecurity, economic recession and socio-political problems that require synergy between the Executive and the Senate for good governance and not show of power.

According to the statement, “Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) is worried and disturbed with the open fights among appointees of the President Muhammadu Buhari on one hand and the altercation between the Executive and the National Assembly in particular the Senate on the other.

“It is a known fact that in the last three weeks or so, Nigerians have witnessed open disagreement between officials of government that are supposed to work in concert, thereby threatening national cohesion and the development of our young democracy.

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“The relationship between the Executive and the Senate on the other hand to say the least is unhealthy, with each flexing its muscle to intimidate the other over issues that could easily be resolved.

“This development is certainly not the best for Nigeria considering the myriad of challenges facing the nation. We are faced with insecurity, economic recession and socio-political problems that require synergy between the Executive and the Senate for good governance and not show of power.

“The attitudes of some government officials over simple invitation by the Senate to come and clarify certain policy issues do more damage than good to the expected cordial working  relationship. On the other hand the Senate resolutions meant to intimidate or threaten the Executive is unnecessary and portrays the Senate as vindictive and antagonistic.

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“ACF therefore appeals to the two arms of government to sheath their swords in the interest of Nigerians who voted them into power and work harmoniously. We can only enjoy the dividends of democracy when all the three arms work in concert, understanding and respect for one another.

“Our constitution provides for separation of powers to facilitate checks and balances in governance, which should be upheld. Any distraction that will threaten our democracy at this material time is uncalled for.

“It is our hope that this passionate appeal will touch the hearts of our leaders to promptly do the needful. We welcome the courage and magnanimity of President Buhari in constituting a Committee under the Vice President Prof Yomi Osinbajo to end the rift between the Executive and the National Assembly”, it said.