After months of speculation and consultations, speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, will today dump the ruling Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) for the All Progressives Congress(APC).
LEADERSHIP gathered that the Sokoto State-born federal lawmaker will read his defection letter on the floor of the lower chamber at plenary.
However, contrary to the widely-held belief, Tambuwal will not resign his position as speaker of the House; he will not lose his membership either.
Tambuwal’s defection to the APC has long been expected by many; his body language and political affiliations had always portrayed a politician on the verge of joining the opposition camp.
The speaker has avoided events organised by the PDP, especially since the emergence of the now defunct New PDP led by five of the G7 governors, one of whom is the governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko.
Tambuwal’s possible defection to the APC was already seen as a done deal with his last week’s attendance of the APC stakeholders’ meeting in Sokoto where Governor Wamakko disclosed that the speaker was just bidding his time in the PDP. Tambuwal, had, however, said he was still consulting.
“I want to inform all stakeholders of the APC gathered here that Tambuwal has been with us since the formation of our great party. We told him to remain in PDP until the day of nomination of the party’s governorship candidate; and today is the day,” Wamakko had said.
A sister publication, LEADERSHIP Sunday, had exclusively reported that Tambuwal’s major dilemma had been the possible legal implications of his defection owing to the ongoing court case at an Abuja High Court instituted by the PDP.
The PDP has been in court to seek, among others, the declaration that seats of those were elected on its platform but had dumped the party should be declared vacant by the court on the ground that they were sponsored by the party.
All the same, the speaker’s decision to finally dump the party may have been as a result of possible conclusions that his headship of the lower house might not necessarily be linked with any political party. Already, some legal minds have clarified the position of the law in this regard.
Regardless, LEADERSHIP exclusively learnt that all consultations are over and that the speaker had made all the necessary arrangements to defect to the APC and contest for the Sokoto State governorship seat in 2015.
A source close to the speaker told our correspondent: “He has concluded arrangements to move to the APC, and we all know that is the right thing for him to do now. The law allows him to defect to another party without losing his membership of the House or his seat as the speaker of the House.
“The law said the speaker can defect as long as there is factionalisation in his party. If there aren’t factionalisations in the party, will Anenih be in Sokoto to lead a reconciliatory committee and will not Sokoto State governor Wamakko still be in the PDP?
“The speaker has been under tremendous pressure from close political associates, youth groups, women groups, elders and members of the public to defect to the APC and contest for Sokoto governorship. He has decided to listen to the voice of the public.”
He added that the governorship ticket had been zoned to Tambuwal’s area and what the people were asking for as Wamakko’s replacement was man with the national and international pedigree to take the state forward.
“There is none other than the speaker right now,” he declared.
When contacted, the media aide to the speaker, Imam Imam, said the speaker’s position on the issue would be made known to the public sooner rather than later.
“My boss has always been open in his dealings and his politics is not an exception. Very soon, he will tell Nigerians his decision,” Imam said.