Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari appears to be putting on a brave face following a wave of defections of lawmakers from his All Progressive Congress, APC party on Tuesday.
Fifteen Nigerian senators left the APC with 38 members of the lower house set to follow suit in a sign of growing rifts in the Buhari political camp.
It was first fourteen of the 15 lawmakers who left the APC to join the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP), a letter read on the Senate floor on Tuesday stated.
Another senator later left the ruling APC while parliament was in session.
Other tweets read: “I am confident that no harm or injury will be done by these defections, to the APC and its aspirations. I urge party faithful to not despair but to instead see this as something that happens in seasons like this, on the eve of elections.
As the saying goes, all politics is local. We understand that some of the Distinguished and Honourable lawmakers have issues in/with their home states, especially on zoning which bars some of them from seeking another term in their constituencies.
Let me also note that none of the defecting federal lawmakers has any specific grievances against me or the government I lead; neither do I harbour any ill-feeling towards any of them. I fully respect their freedom to choose what party to associate with.
I am using this opportunity to restate my total commitment to the values of democracy, as well as my total willingness to work with ALL members of the National Assembly, irrespective of their political party, for the benefit of Nigeria and Nigerians.”