By Emmanuel Aziken, Political Editor
LAGOS — Efforts by the Presidency and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to stave off a clash between the Presidency and the House of Representatives over the summons to President Goodluck Jonathan by the House were, yesterday, challenged by minority and dissident members of the ruling party.
While the ruling party was seeking a reversal of the House resolution, Presidency officials on their part, were aqually seeking a middle course that would involve the delegation of security aides of the President to represent the president in the House.
Presidency officials are, however, agreed that on no account should the president honour the invitation. One Presidency official told Vanguard
that the invitation was a crass breach of the separation of powers.
The House of Representatives had on June 19 summoned the President and his top security aides, including the service chiefs, to brief the House on the security situation in the country and efforts by the administration to address it.
Sources revealed, yesterday, that the PDP national secretariat was already engaging the House leadership on how to resolve the problem through softening the hearts of PDP members of the House who form the majority.
The PDP national secretariat is believed to be working through Speaker Aminu Tambuwal on the issue.
Reached for his comments on the developments, yesterday, Rep. Victor Ogene, Deputy Chairman of the House Committee on Media said the House leadership would act within the bounds of resolutions adopted by the House in whatever dealings it has with interested stakeholders on the issue.
“If they do, it would not be out of place because we have reiterated over time that Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, is not a partisan person. So whereas it is the prerogative of any political party to reach him on any issue, the speaker has always been guided by the resolutions of the House,” Ogene told Vanguard
The peace effort by the PDP, it was learnt yesterday, was being frustrated by those opposed to the intervention who incidentally come from within the ranks of the PDP and the opposition parties.
“How do you reverse the House resolution,” one prominent opposition member told Vanguard
“He has also indicated a willingness to interface with us as you saw during the media chat, but I think the problem comes from some officials and even the media, who will say that we summoned him. We didn’t summon him, we only invited him and we didn’t put a time frame,” Rep. Victor Ogene, APGA, Anambra State, himself one of the leading opposition members in the House, told Vanguard
One other prominent member of the ruling party was, however, dismissive of the fears of the presidency.
“What are they afraid of? We have people who we give account to in the 360 constituencies in the House and we need to know what is happening, so this for us is a serious issue,” the senior PDP member told Vanguard.
However, a senior presidency official told Vanguard yesterday dismissed any apprehension on the part of the presidency saying that it was not a do or die matter for the president.
“If I know Mr. President he may even on his own elect to go and interact with them on this and other issues. He has been doing it, but it is just the way this one is being carried out,” the official said yesterday.Vanguard Nigeria