Senate Leader Ali Ndume yesterday said he lost the plum seat because he backed Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Acting Chairman Ibrahim Magu.
He described himself as a victim of “parliamentary coup”.
But he said God will fight back for him.
Ndume, who spoke exclusively with our correspondent, said there was no record of where and how the Senate Caucus of the All Progressives Congress (APC) met to decide his sack.
He said no allegations were levelled against him either by the Senate or the APC Senate Caucus.
Said Ndume: “I went to pray and I handed over to my deputy to take charge but by the time I came back, I was told that APC Caucus had selected a new Senate Leader.
“I did not know how the Caucus arrived at this decision. Nobody confronted me with allegations of any misdemeanour or infraction.
“I was not invited to any Caucus meeting. Nobody circulated any notice of any meeting. Some of my colleagues said they were not aware of any Caucus meeting or where it was held. I even wanted to get the number of those at the Caucus meeting, there is no record.
“This is a parliamentary coup because many of my colleagues said they were not aware of any Caucus meeting. But so be it. God gave me that position and if that is His wish that I should leave, I have left everything to God.
“Had it been that I was found wanting of any allegation, I will not be surprised. All I know is that God will fight back for me.”
Read also: DSS Integrity Test Prompted Senate To Reject EFCC Boss, Magu |The Republican News
Asked to be specific on what he suspected to have accounted for his removal, Ndume added: “I did no wrong, except the issue of the confirmation of the Acting EFCC chairman, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, which brought up some issues. There was a disagreement on Magu beginning with my fight with Sen. Dino Melaye.
“Based on legislative procedure, I said Magu had not been rejected by the Senate. Shortly after that, there were rumours of collection of signatures to remove me.
“Even at that, we met at the Senate leadership level on Monday, there was no complaint against me. I was not aware that the leadership was not happy with me. There was no allegation against me at all. Certainly, it is a coup.”
Our correspondent learnt that Ndume’s fate was sealed at a secret meeting by some Senators in Dubai.
It was gathered that the Senators relocated to Dubai to avoid the leakage of the plot, which was masterminded by some loyalists of Senate President Dr. Bukola Saraki.
“The masterminds went to Dubai to plot how Ndume will be sacked. We suspected that a principal officer was with them in the UAE.
“They went to Dubai to avoid the prying eyes of Ndume and his network of friends in the Senate,” a source said.
The Nation had exclusively reported the collection of signatures against Ndume and the secret meeting in Dubai .
Some Senators, who pleaded not to be named, gave insights into the intrigues which led to Ndume’s sack.
A Senator said: “Some senators were angry that Ndume distanced himself from the decision of the Executive Session on Magu. We were all embarrassed. As Senate Leader, he was duty-bound to defend the decision of the Senate no matter how distasteful it was to him.
“We took note of the fact that he had openly dissented with the Senate on two or three instances like this.”
A senator from the Northwest said: “Ndume emerged Senate Leader as a product of treachery, he has been consumed by a robust treachery.”
Another said: “Ndume’s sack was restricted to APC Caucus because of the large influence he wields across parties. If it is a plenary decision, the mastermind might not secure the majority.
Read also: Prof. Sagay Lambasts Senate For Delaying Magu’s Confirmation |The Republican News
“And the good thing is that it is the responsibility of the APC Caucus to choose the Senate Leader. What we did was to dust up the June 23, 2015 directive of APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, to effect the change.
“As a matter of fact, as part of plans to reunite the Senate and consolidate Saraki’s leadership, we have decided to fully reintegrate the aggrieved members of the Unity Forum.
The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress(APC), Chief John Odigie-Oyegun’s letter to the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki bordered on the party’s position on the principal officers for the 8th National Assembly.
The June 23 letter to Saraki, said: “Please find below for your necessary action names of principal officers approved by the party, after extensive consultations for the 8th Senate as follows: Sen.Ahmed Lawan (Majority Leader)—North-East; Prof. Sola Adeyeye (Chief Whip)—Southwest; Sen. George Akume( Deputy Majority Leader)—Northcentral; and Sen. Abu Ibrahim(Deputy Chief Whip)—North-West. (The Nation)