The main headlines of the mainstream Nigerian newspapers for Thursday, July 26, are focused on the mass defection from the All Progressives Congress as well as President Muhammmadu Buhari's reaction as party continues to lose members.
This Day reports that the gale of defections continued to sweep through the yard of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) on Wednesday as one of its governors, Samuel Ortom of Benue state, left its rank to rejoin his former party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
The Benue situation is likely to be replicated in Imo state, where the deputy governor, Eze Madumere, and some other key members, including Senator Ifeanyi Ararume, a former national organising secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso, and Senator Ben Uwajumogu, are said to be under pressure to join the ship.
The Guardian reports that the APC on Wednesday said it was stunned by the defection of Benue state governor, Samuel Ortom, to the PDP.
APC national publicity secretary Bolaji Abdullah said: “The governor had left the (reconciliatory) meeting saying he was satisfied with the assurances given by party leaders. We are still working on giving effect to the resolutions from the meeting. Therefore, we are somewhat surprised by Governor Ortom’s decision."
The Punch reports that President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday evening met behind closed doors with senators elected on the platform of the ruling APC.
The meeting, which was held inside the First Lady Conference Hall of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, started at about 10pm.
The meeting came barely 24hours after a gale of defection hit the APC caucus in the two chambers of the National Assembly.
Vanguard reports that the Muhammadu Buhari 2019 campaign rganisation, yesterday, gave reasons defections by several National Assembly members will not harm the electoral prospects of the president, saying that the legislators, who left the APC were laggards who lost out to internal political dynamics.
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The Nation reports that Senate president Bukola Saraki and House speaker Yakubu Dogara got a piece of advice yesterday to resign from the APC or be expelled.
The advice came from the Senate committee on police affairs chairman, Abu Ibrahim, an ally of President Buhari in the upper chamber and APC deputy national publicity secretary Yekini Nabena.
Ibrahim said the failure of Saraki and Dogara to leave the party would lead to their expulsion.
The senator, who represents Katsina South senatorial district, also said the plot to impeach President Buhari would have begun today (Thursday) as planned by some lawmakers.
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