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The caucuses of the Peoples
Democratic Party and the All Progressives Congress in the Senate on Thursday
said peace had returned to the chamber.

The leaders of the two sides,
during the plenary, said they had left their differences behind them.

The session on Wednesday was marred
by protests, when members of the PDP caucus stormed out of the chamber over the
refusal of the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, to declare the Ondo South
Senatorial District seat vacant after the defection of the occupant, Senator
Yele Omogunwa.

The PDP senators had, together with
the rebellious APC lawmakers, helped to elect Saraki and the Deputy Senate
President, Ike Ekweremadu, on June 9, 2015, against the choices of the ruling

The walkout staged by the PDP
lawmakers had indicated a crack in the walls of the alliance between the
opposition and Saraki’s camp.

But the Deputy Majority Leader of
the Senate, Bala Ibn Na’Allah, during the plenary on Thursday, commended
members of the PDP caucus for sheathing their sword by returning to the

He said, “I honestly and sincerely
commend the patriotism and the commitment of the leadership of the Peoples
Democratic Party caucus ably guided by distinguished Senator Godswill Akpabio
and supported by distinguished Senator Ike Ekweremadu.

“I feel happy that I have been
vindicated that this Senate is a distinct Senate; that this Senate means well
for this country and there is nothing, and, I repeat, nothing that we do not
have the capacity to put behind us politically. I thank the leadership of the
PDP caucus for that very good quality.”

Saraki, who presided over the plenary,
in his remarks, also commended the PDP caucus for putting the country first in
its decision.

He said, “I think you (Na’Allah)
have covered everything, and there can never be any further debate. But I think
I can also note and add a word to commend the friends of the PDP caucus and
continue to show that this Senate is one family.”

Akpabio, who later spoke, described
the development on Wednesday as a “protracted discussion.”

He said, “We are very happy to be
back after a protracted discussion and we are also happy that change is coming
to the 8th Senate through the action of yesterday; and that we would continue
to put the interests of Nigeria forward, first and foremost before our personal
interests. My dear colleagues, I thank you for your maturity and I bow.”

Omogunwa, who was the only PDP
senator from Ondo, had written to Saraki to formally inform the Senate of his
defection from the PDP to the APC, the letter that was read to members of the
chamber during the plenary.

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