The Senate experienced uproar on Tuesday when Senate President Godswill Akpabio announced the appointment of two minority leaders. This followed the vacancy created after the Court of Appeal nullified the election of Senator Simon Davou Mwadkwon (PDP, Plateau North) and Darlington Nwokocha (LP, Abia Central) as Senate Minority Leader and Minority Whip, respectively.
Akpabio declared Abba Moro (PDP, Benue South) as the new minority leader and Osita Ngwu (PDP, Enugu West) as the minority whip. However, the announcement caused discontent, particularly among Labour Party (LP) members, who felt excluded from the minority leadership positions.
Senator Okechukwu Ezea (LP, Enugu North) raised a point of order, denouncing the exclusion of LP from the minority leadership and labeling it as unfair and unacceptable. The Senate session turned rowdy as LP lawmakers rejected the arrangement.
Senator Tony Nwoyi (LP, Anambra North) accused Akpabio of interfering in the opposition’s affairs and questioned the process of selecting minority leaders. After a tumultuous 15-minute session, Akpabio defended his actions, stating that he merely announced the names presented to him by the opposition caucus, and urged them to resolve internal issues before making recommendations.
Efforts by Senator Adamu Aliero (PDP, Kebbi) to request a delay on the decision for the minority whip position were unsuccessful, as Akpabio ruled him out of order, referring to Senate Standing Rule 52(6), which prohibits senators from speaking on issues already decided.