N100m Bribe Rocks ANPP Senate Caucus

  • Sunday, December 05, 2004 - From Cletus Akwaya in Abuja
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Indications emerged on Saturday night that the recent removal of the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) Senate Leader, Senator Usman Albishir, and Minority Whip, Senator Yushaâ??u Anka, was sponsored from outside the Senate.
The removal of the duo is a throw back to the leadership crisis presently rocking the ANPP.

Already, one of the ANPP senators has been fingered to be at the centre of the N100 million bribery scandal which allegedly trailed the change of ANPP guard in the Senate.

Senate sources said the senator got the money from a sitting governor from one of the Northern states to sponsor the removal of Senator Albishir.
Meanwhile, an ANPP senator and the Public Accounts Committee Chairman, Senator Mamman Ali, is said to be up in arm against Albishir.
Aliâ??s grudge with Albishir, it was learnt, borders on clash of interest as both of them are alleged to be warming up for the governorship of Yobe State come 2007.

The senator's desperate moves to outwit Albishir, sources added, stemmed from recent indications from Gov-ernment House Damaturu, that the State Governor, Alhaji Bukar Abba Ibrahim, might be more disposed to Albishirâ??s candidature.
Abba Ibrahim is said to be in favour of Albishirâ??s candidature because of the senatorâ??s perceived maturity and reliability.

When the ANPP crisis broke out in the Senate on November 24, the Senate President, Chief Adolphus Wabara, tried in vain to persuade the ANPP Senate caucus to retain Albishir.

After over four hours of meeting however, the ANPP caucus took a compromise decision to allow Albishir and the Minority Whip, Senator Yushaâ??u Anka, to resign their appointments.

In picking their replacements, the caucus opted for Senator Lawan Shuaibu, Chairman Senate Committee on Drugs and Narcotics from Zamfara State as ANPP Minority leader and Senator Bello Yusuf Maitama from Jigawa as Minority Whip.
The ANPP caucus is said to have opposed all overtures by Ali to have the position zoned to his state (Yobe) to enable him become the new minority leader.

Sources at the meeting said the caucus rejected Ali as Albishirâ??s successor on the grounds that he could be a willing tool for some external forces.

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