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Despite defections, APC maintains majority in Senate

The All Progressives Congress (APC) still commands a nine-man margin majority at the Nigerian Senate, checks by PREMIUM TIMES indicate.

With 56 Senators still pledging allegiance to it, APC continues to maintain a lead it launched at the start of the eighth Senate.

The party’s majority is in spite of the fact the wave of defections last year which saw the Senate President joining his deputy in the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.

Numerical confusion
From 1999 when Nigeria returned to civil rule, the Senate is constitutionally drafted to compose of 109 Senators: three from each of the 36 states totalling 108, and the last one from the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

The eighth Senate started with Kwara Central Senator, Bukola Saraki, as its president.

Officially, the APC had 64 Senators and PDP 50 for most part of 2018 but this changed in the seventh month following a spate of defections.

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Mr Saraki won his election under APC but in July 2018, he defected to the PDP fuelling confusion on his stand as president and further, on the majority/ minority composition of the Senate.

One week before this, some 15 APC lawmakers had announced their defection from the party, 14 immediately joining PDP and the last, the African Democratic Congress (ADC).

The new numerical difference between the two parties then stood at 52 for APC to 50 from PDP.

Releasing a list of names of the APC lawmakers then, Senate Leader, Ahmed Lawan, was optimistic that some of the defecting senators would have a rethink and return to the APC while emphasising that his party still has a majority.

In one of the numerous reactions that followed, senators Isa Misau and Rafiu Ibrahim, in a joint statement ,warned against any move to impeach Mr Saraki, noting that PDP lawmakers in the Senate outnumber those of APC. That was in August, 2018.

The controversy lingered until the Senate went on break in December.

Upon resumption for the New Year in January 16, the Senate was expected to call for a head-count to determine the party composition of the Senate. This did not happen.

Apart from the fact that only a few senators attend plenaries, at no time did the leadership of the Senate contemplate making a count.

PREMIUM TIMES’ checks indicate that the APC still has the larger numerical strength at the Senate.

The check shows that the party has 56 senators currently in the Senate although some of them are not eligible for re-election.

PDP, which controls the leadership, has 47 senators.

Chart to represent the parities of Senators in the Nigerian Senate
The other six are shared among the minor parties: ADC, with three Senators; All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) having one each.

When reached for comments, Senate spokesperson, Sabi Abdullahi, did not answer calls. He also did not respond to text messages.

His deputy, Ben Murrau-Bruce, could not be reached on his known line.

See the full break down below:
1. Abia State

Central Theodore Orji PDP

South Enyinnaya Abaribe PDP

North Mao Ohuabunwa PDP

2. Adamawa State

Central Abdul-Aziz Nyako ADC

North Binta Masi Garba APC

South Ahmad Abubakar APC

3. Akwa Ibom State

Northwest Godswill Akpabio APC

South Nelson Effiong APC

Northeast Bassey Akpan PDP

4. Anambra State

North Stella Oduah PDP

South Andy Uba APC

Central Victor Umeh APGA

5. Bauchi State

South Lawan Gumau APC

North Sulaiman Nazif PDP

Central Isah Misau PDP

6. Bayelsa State

East Ben Murray-Bruce PDP

Central Emmanuel Paulker PDP

West Foster Ogola PDP

7. Benue State

Northeast Barnabas Gemade SDP

Northeast George Akume APC

South David Mark PDP

8. Borno State

South Ali Ndume APC

North Abubakar Kyari APC

Central Baba Garba APC

9. Cross River State

South Gershom Bassey PDP

Central John Enoh APC

North Rose Okoji Oko PDP

10. Delta State

North Peter Nwaboshi PDP

Central Ovie Omo-Agege APC

South James Manager PDP

11. Ebonyi State

Central Obinna Ogba PDP

South Sunday Ogbuoji APC

North Sam Ominyi Egwu PDP

12. Edo State

North Francis Alimikhena APC

South Matthew Urhoghide PDP

Central Ordia Clifford PDP

13. Ekiti State

North Duro Faseyi PDP

Central Fatimat Raji-Rasaki APC

South Biodun Olujimi PDP

14. Enugu State

East Gilbert Nnaji PDP

West Ike Ekweremadu PDP

North Utazi Chukwuka PDP

15. Gombe State

Central Danjuma Goje APC

South Joshua Lidani APC

North Usman Nafada PDP

16. Imo State

West Hope Uzodinma APC

East Samuel Anyanwu PDP

North Ben Uwajumogu APC

17. Jigawa State

North Muhammed Ubali Shitu PDP

Northwest Abdullahi Gumel APC

Southwest Mohammed Sabo APC

18. Kaduna State

Central Shehu Sani PRP

North Suleiman Hunkuyi PDP

South Danjuma Laah PDP

19. Kano State

North Jibrin I. Barau APC

South Kabiru Gaya APC

Central Rabiu Kwankwaso PDP

20. Katsina State

Central Kurfi Umaru APC

South Abu Ibrahim APC

North Ahmad Babba-Kaita APC

21. Kebbi State

Central Adamu Aliero APC

South Bala Naallah APC

North Yahaya Abdullahi APC

22. Kogi State

Central Ahmed Ogembe PDP

East Atai AIidoko Ali PDP

West Dino Melaye PDP

23. Kwara State

North Shaaba Lafiagi PDP

South Rafiu Ibrahim PDP

Central Bukola Saraki PDP

24. Lagos State

East Gbenga Ashafa APC

Central Oluremi Tinubu APC

West Olamilekan Adeola APC

25. Nasarawa State

North Philip Aruwa Gyunka PDP

South Suleiman Adokwe PDP

West Abdullahi Adamu APC

26. Niger State

East David Umaru APC

South Sani Mohammed APC

North Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi APC

27. Ogun State

Central Olanrewaju Tejuoso APC

East Buruji Kashamu PDP

West Gbolahan Dada APC

28. Ondo State

Central Omotayo Alasoadura APC

North Robert Boroffice APC

South Yele Omogunwa APC

29. Osun State

Central Olusola Adeyeye APC

East Omoworare Babajide APC

West Ademola Adeleke PDP

30. Oyo State

North Abdulfatai Buhari APC

South Rilwan Akanbi ADC

Central Monsurat Sunmonu ADC

31. Plateau State

South Jeremiah Useni PDP

North Johan Jang PDP

Central Joshua Dariye APC

32. Rivers State

East Magnus Abe APC

Southeast Andrew Uchendu APC

West Osinakachukwu Ideozu APC

33. Sokoto State

South Ibrahim Danbaba PDP

North Aliyu Wamakko APC

East Ibrahim Gobir APC

34. Taraba State

South Emmanuel Bwacha PDP

North Abubakar Sani PDP

Central Yusuf Abubakar Yusuf APC

35. Yobe State

North Ahmed Lawan APC

South Mohammed Hassan APC

East Bukar Ibrahim APC

36. Zamfara State

North Tijjani Kaura APC

Central Kabir Garba APC

West Ahmad Sani PDP

37. Federal Capital Territory PDP

Philip Aduda Tanimu

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