Former Leader of the Senate, Senator Ali Ndume (APC-Borno South), has said he regrets supporting the emergence of Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki as the President of the Senate.
Ndume, who accused Saraki of having reduced the Senate to unbearable level of integrity, spoke on on a Channels Television programme, Hard Copy, on Friday night.
Asked if he regretted backing Saraki for the Senate presidency, he said: “Yes, I do.
“Look at the Senate now, we have been reduced to unbearable level of integrity, just because of few people, few person, that is wrong.
“I don’t want to be individualistic about it.
“We put the leadership there for Saraki.
“We have Senator’s President now, instead of Senate President.
“I speak the truth a lot, even if I’m alone, and I stand by it.
“We started with the issue of (Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim) Magu.
“I was with you on national TV and that is history now.
“Then we came out and the second issue was that of the car importation and the issue of Dino Melaye’s certificate and then I was shockingly suspended for 180 days and it was not the committee that recommended that.
“My colleagues did not know about the report that was used to suspend me illegally and unconstitutionally for 180 days.
“That’s why I went quietly to court and you see the response of my people then.
“It is not fair for one among equal to take himself up and use, take advantage of the gavel to rule instead of to lead, instead of to preside, that is what the constitution says.
“The Senate president is to preside, he doesn’t even have a vote, he has no voice.
“By the time you accept being the Senate President, you have lost your right to some extent as a senator until the Senate ties, that is when you come in to break the ties.
“This is not the case as Senate president will say: ‘I direct so so so and my members….’
“I mean, it’s very unfortunate.
“I personally did not expect this.
“That is how we got it wrong because once an individual thinks he owns the Senate and he dishes out the direction and dishes out what he thinks, you’ll always get it wrong….
“One hundred and eight heads are better than one.
“But for now, Senate at certain point is like Dino and Saraki.
“It is very unfortunate.”