Erstwhile chairman of the Delta State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Senator Peter Nwaoboshi, PDP, Delta North is also chairman, Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs. Nwaoboshi, a veteran of many political battles in his native Delta State includes among his laurels or scars, his famed fallout with Governor James Ibori in the approach to the 2007 transition when he was a leading protagonist for the shift of the governorship to Delta North. Nwaoboshi would also not be easily forgotten for his leading role in the
nationally televised pitch battle for the 2011 Delta North Senate PDP ticket that saw him engage another and possibly more entrenched operator in the person of Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa.
At that time, Nwaoboshi was not even an aspirant, but his
trenchant position gave the impression of being an ally of Dr. Mrs. Mariam Ali, wife of a former national chairman of thePDP, Col. Ahmadu Ali, who contested the ticket with Okowa.
It was a matter of interest that four years later that Nwaoboshi and Mrs. Ali were on opposite sides in the Delta North contest as both party chieftains squabbled over who between them would take the ticket voluntarily relinquished by Senator Okowa.
In the Senate, Nwaoboshi has been quick to make his presence known and is believed to be one of the arrowheads on the side of the embattled president of the Senate, Senator Bukola Saraki.
Given the increasingly shaky position of the Senate President
on account of his ongoing trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal, it is not surprising that Nwaoboshi would come out to give a dire warning to Saraki’s enemies in the All Progressives Congress, APC what they stand to lose should
the Senate President be removed.
Is the PDP not concerned that APC senators are now uniting around Saraki?
Well, I wish APC the best of luck if they are making that wild goose chase. But I want you to mark what I’m saying; I was the first to address the press in Port Harcourt, and I told them that Saraki was going to win the Senate Presidency and I gave them my reasons.
Then, nobody ever thought that Saraki was going to win. If,
but God forbid, because we don’t see it coming, by chance
Saraki is removed; I can tell you that PDP will produce the next Senate President.
But you don’t have the numbers to actualize this?
What numbers? We only need three, and we have it. Mathematical calculations
The calculation is very clear to me. The calculation is very
clear for PDP. We know what it will take us. When I told them
that Saraki was going to win, I did a lot of mathematical
calculations based on the facts on the ground, and it is even
clearer to me now that the PDP will win it.
We will win it. If anybody is thinking that a PDP man is going
to vote against a PDP candidate, he is telling you a lie. We
have people, and we know how to get the people from APC.
We will win, and that will be very interesting.
What is happening in America is going to happen in Nigeria.
America has a Republican Senate, but the executive is led by
Democrats. So, it’s happening in different parts of the world. I
can tell you with what’s on the ground that we will produce
the next Senate President.
But then the PDP has number seats outstanding. You have
one in Anambra, three in Rivers and one in Kogi, won’t that
affect your party?
Attachment not found
Take note that we
have gotten one in
outstanding one in
Kogi is also PDP,
and I can tell you
that if you do the
elections in Kogi
20 times, the PDP
will win. Our
The first Senator has been sworn in out of the two elections
that they did there. In the second election, the PDP is leading
with over 40,000 votes already. So, we know what we are
calculating. The three in Rivers, we are leading. The ones in
Imo and Anambra, we will win. There is nothing called APC in
all those areas. You have seen it in Rivers. It’s clear to the
whole world that there is nothing that will make APC win
Rivers. Whether you do all the magomago, it’s so clear to
Nigerians now. Nigerians now know who is making noise. So,
we will get those seats.
But even without those seats, we have our calculations. Even
if they don’t do those elections, we have our calculations well
wrapped. Don’t forget it’s going to be by secret ballot. It’s
not going to be by open ballot.
That’s what our rule says, and we are not going to amend the
rule before we do it. So, we will go in there to use the
present rule we are using and do a secret ballot. I can assure
you that we will win.
What if the APC can rein in their members like they
attempted to do before June 9 last year? Is that person (from
APC) going to write the names in the chambers? We will walk
into the chambers, and only you and your God knows what
you are writing.
Let me make it clear to you; if PDP had wanted the Senate
President in June 2015, they would have won. It is some of
us who felt that we should assist so that they don’t accuse
PDP of trying to frustrate the present government of President
We didn’t want to be accused by the Nigerian people that we
want to frustrate Buhari’s government; that we had just left
power; we don’t want the man to rule. That’s why we brought
in an APC Senate President. Otherwise, how many were they
on the floor that day? We would have won. Ekweremadu
contested with Ali Ndume, and he won with the block vote of
the PDP. He got fifty-something votes with the block votes of
PDP. If the PDP had said okay we want to take it (Senate
Presidency), how many were they on the floor that day? We
would have won, and the person would have been sworn in,
and that would have been the position.
Dying on the streets
This time, Nigerian people are now seeing that what you call
to change is not the change. Nigerian people have now seen
that the APC has been there for almost a year now, and
people are crying, dying on the streets.
Is the PDP desperate to retain Rivers State to the extent of
One of the greatest legacies that former President Goodluck
Jonathan gave to this country is the conduct of free and fair
election. He is the first President in Nigeria to hand over
power to an opposition and congratulated the man who won.
Whether you like it or not, history will be very fair to him. He
was a great democrat and a very good sportsman. Having
said that, let us look at the elections you are talking about.
The Rivers election, there was a court order that said you
should not use the Army. They didn’t obey it. They brought
the army to snatch ballot boxes and rig election for them.
Who brought in the army? Why didn’t they allow the people
themselves to do their election?
What is the army doing in an election? What are the soldiers
doing in an election?
By and large, you have no fear that the Senate President will
lose this case?
I had the privilege of discussing this issue with him. I have
had the privilege of looking at the documents on this matter. I
have had the privilege of sharing my opinion with his
lawyers. If it is to follow the law strictly, in fact, I will ask his
lawyers to go for a no case submission based on the facts I
have in my hand.
There is nothing in those things. The only thing we should
worry about is the independence of the Code of Conduct
Tribunal. Is the CCT independent? That’s what we are asking.
How can a court overrule itself? Which higher court has
overruled you? You made a legal pronouncement; it has not
been tested. Your judgment has not been tested. You said
no, you made it in error. It means now that you have to bring
back the other person because you have done a disservice to
He would have waited for the higher court to make a
pronouncement on what he has done. That is why some
people are saying there is a lot of politics going on in this
That is what is even toughening the opposition in the Senate;
you want to give us a Senate President that you can call to
Aso Rock, you drink a cup of tea and hand over instructions
to him. Nobody is going to allow that. The Senate we have
now, we are almost equal in figure. So, nobody is going to
allow you to do that.