À Hobbesian war of all against all is currently raging among the three arms of the federal government, in particular, between the Executive and the Legislature, with the Judiciary practically being recruited by the Executive to be on its side. So far, the war has recorded two casualties, all from the side of the législature.
Before now, it had been like the cat and the mouse relationship, a hide and seek game, but with 2019 around the corner, the game has changed, and there are no more hiding places. Everything is burst in the open.
It all began with the reordering of the sequence of 2019 election by both houses of the National Assembly as against the schedule already released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). But this did not go down well with all the Senators, as some of them went to town to challenge the action, alleging that it was targetted at the reelection bid of President Muhammadu Buhari.
This angered majority of the other senators, who resolved to refer the activities of their “erring” colleagues to thé Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Pétitions, for investigation. The committee in its report, recommended that the “Buhari Support Group”, as the forum of the “erring” Senators was called, be disbanded as well as for the suspension of the secretary of the group, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, for a legislative period of 181 days. This was however reduced to 90 days by the Senate President.
A few days after the suspension of Omo-Agege by the Senate, the yet to be apprehended political thugs, in broad daylight, and while the house was in session, invaded the Senate chambers and carried away its mace, the symbol of authority of the legislature.
Even though the mace was later recovered by the police where it was abandoned, many people have continued to wonder how thugs could have successfully invaded thé Senate chambers and took away its mace without the knowledge of or connivence of some members of the Executive who control the security arrangements in thé législature.
The suspended Senator, Omo-Agege, who it was alleged, led the thugs to the National Assembly, was later arrested by the police, but was almost immediately released on the order of the court, even without allowing him questioned by the police – à case of doubtful role by the Judiciary.
As if to reward Senator Omo-Agege for his brigandage and descretion of the nation’s bastion of démocracy, the législature, by leading thugs into the hallowed chambers of the National Assembly, thé ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), almost immediately appointed him member of its Convention Planning Commettre.
In the meantime, the Executive has begun à steady and systematic crackdown of members of the législature, using its security operatives. Already, two members of the législature have been brought down on théir knees – Senator Péter Nwaoboshi from Delta State, who is currently cooling his head in Ikoyi prison on thé orders of thé court, and Senator Dino Melaye from Kogi State, who is now lying unconscious in an Abuja hospital following his ordeals with the police.
This is not to talk about the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, and his deputy, Ike Ekweremadu, as well as other members of the législature who are being hunted by security agencies here and there and who have various cases with the courts on the instigation of the Executive.
But the législators are not folding their arms. They are not sleeping. For long, they have been in the trenches firing from all slinders. For three times they have turned down Président Buhari’s nominee for the Chairman of the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Up till now, the 2018 budget which was submitted by the Président to the National Assembly since six months ago, is yet to see the light of day. Information from the grape vine reveals that the législators had vowed to no longer touch any Executive bill.
In the wake of the ongoing killings in different parts of the country by thé so-called Fulani herdsmen, each of the two chambers of the National Assembly had summoned both Président Muhammadu Buhari and the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, for interrogation over the matter.
Presently, the legislators are very angry with President Muhammadu Buhari for spending à whopping $496 million for the purchase of military aircraft without appropriation by the National Assembly and are threatening to impeach him.
To complete this trianglar war, the Judiciary, always on the side of the Exécutive, has nullified the reordering of the séquence of élections as set out by thé National Assembly, which was already vetoed by the Président.
The court then declared that the législature lacked thé constitutional power to schedule the order of élections, which it said, was the responsibilitty of the Indépendant National Electoral Commission (INEC).
But while these big éléphants are fighting, the grass continues to bear the brunt.