Ita Enang, senior special assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on national assembly (senate), says a great number of the lawmakers who defected to other political parties from the All Progressives Congress (APC) have indicated that they will campaign for his principal in 2019.
On Tuesday, 15 senators and 37 members of the house of representatives left the APC.
Speaking with journalists on Thursday, Enang said some of the legislators he interacted with told him that they left the party not because of Buhari but because of “domestic actors in their constituency”.
“We appreciate that the entire intending defectors or aggrieved members of the APC have not defected but expressed grievances. But in all the grievances expressed, none is attributed or directed at President Muhammadu Buhari, nor his actions or any action or omission of the president or the federal government,” he said.
“In fact in my interaction pre and post expression of intent to defect, all the dramatis personae the distinguished senators and members expressed their solidarity and support for Mr. President and expressed categorically that their grievances and consequent actions are not directed against President Buhari nor his re-election bid, but domestic actors in their constituency political fields such as the governors, state party leaders or frustration over zoning or indeed calculations for a return ticket or platform for 2019 elections.
“Indeed a great number of them have indicated that even if they pursue their bid on a different political platform they will still campaign for President Buhari for 2019 on the APC platform.”
The presidential aide said the executive would continue to respect the lawmakers
“As the legislature proceeds on the conventional annual vacation On behalf of the presidency liaison to the national assembly, we wish them eventful restful and politically active vacation,” he said.
“The executive will be consulting with the legislature over matters pending consideration such as 2018 virement proposals, approval of borrowings to fund the 2018 appropriation, approval of the pending 2018 budget of 64 government owned corporations laid by Mr. President along with the 2018 budget, including request for approval of appointments.
“We pray the legislature will find the normal ingenious patriotic means and time to attend to these within the period of the vacation in the interest of the nation which the legislature is passionately committed to.”