Exercise Restraint, Buhari Appeals To Aggrieved APC Senators

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President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday met 22 aggrieved Senators elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), in a bid to stop them from defecting from the party.

Buhari, who met the Senators, who are aggrieved over their inability to secure a return ticket to the Senate, at the State House, Abuja, appealed to them to exercise restraint and focus on building the party.

The leadership of the APC, according to President Buhari, would sustain the healing process it started to ensure fairness, justice and oneness before next year’s general elections.

The meeting is coming on the heels of reports that not less than 20 APC Senators have concluded plans to dump the party.

During the meeting with the lawmakers, Buhari assured them that as the leader of the party, he had noted their concerns over the outcome of the just-concluded primaries and the threat to the majority held by the APC in the National Assembly.

The President said: “I have noted your grievances, particularly as it concerns the just-concluded primaries; the cost to the nation, the threat to the majority of positions held by our party in the legislative chambers and likely consequences to the electoral fortunes of the party as we approach the general elections. We must not allow this dire threat to come to pass.

“I must acknowledge that in every contest there must be a level playing field, just as there would be grievances at the end. That is the test of our democratic credentials, systems and practices. I have since the conclusion of the process been inundated with various reports and complaints.

“In keeping with our ethos therefore, I shall continue to address the challenges and grievances through the party machinery while paying keen attention to the outcomes. I urge you and all party members to exercise restraint and continue to demonstrate commitment to the ideals while we continue to build and develop the party and the country.”

Buhari reminded the lawmakers of the “primary primacy of justice” in their actions, saying if justice is denied, its outcome is usually unpleasant.

“I should add that as part of the policy of using the party machinery for effective resolutions of conflict, the chairman and some members of the National Working Committee visited the National Assembly recently to dialogue with our legislators.

“The leadership of the party is currently addressing the outcomes as part of the way forward. I am encouraging all party functionaries to adhere to the truth and to be fair to all parties in any dispute. This is important because our strength and victory in the election lies in the unity of the party in our ability to prevent or heal any injustice perceived or real.

“Finally, let me assure you that justice shall prevail; aggrieved members shall be assuaged in the interest of the party and the nation shall be protected”, President Buhari said.

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