The Kogi State senator, Dino Melaye, at the Senate plenary on Tuesday rallied his colleagues to save him from being recalled by his constituents.
The appeal comes as the Independent National Electoral Commission unveiled a timetable and modalities for the exercise at his Kogi West Senatorial District.
The senator restated his claim that his recall was masterminded by his state governor, Yahaya Bello
Mr. Melaye cited Order 14 of the Senate Rule and pleaded with his colleagues to act.
The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, assured Mr. Melaye of the upper chamber’s support, proclaiming the recall process “dead on arrival.”
Mr. Ekweremadu said the Constitution made recall a cumbersome process, and, as such, would be difficult for Mr. Melaye’s opponents to succeed.
“The Senate would also verify the legitimacy of the votes before a conclusion is made,” Mr. Ekweremadu said; although the deputy senate president’s claim is not stated in the constitutional requirement for recall.
Signatures for Mr. Melaye’s recall were collected at his contituency in an exercise that began on June 10.
Campaigners said 188,588 signatures were submitted to INEC, which is more than 52 per cent of about 260,000 voters in the constituency.
On June 22, INEC notified Mr. Melaye of the recall process. His lawyers responded with a lawsuit the next day, asking the electoral body to stay all actions relating to the exercise.
INEC, however, said it would proceed with the recall process since there was no court injunction stopping it.