President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki, survived an early Tuesday morning siege on his Abuja residence to later read a letter at plenary from 13 members of the All Progressives’ senators, declaring their defection from the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP – making it now the majority party in the senate.
The senators include Rabi’u Kwankwaso (Kano-Central), Dino Melaye (Kogi-West), Adesoji Akanbi (Oyo-South), Monsurat Sunmonu (Oyo-Central), Rafiu Ibrahim (Kwara-South), Suleiman Hunkuyi (Kaduna-North), and Lanre Tejuoso (Ogun-Central).
Others are Usman Nafada (Gombe), Ibrahim Dambaba (Sokoto), Mohammed Shittu (Jigawa) Isa Misau (Bauchi) Suleiman Nazif (Bauchi) Shaaba Lafiagi (Kwara) and Barnabas Gemade (Benue).
Also, Senator Abdul-Azeez Murtala-Nyako (Adamawa) who had earlier dumped the APC for the African Democratic Congress, also formalised his defection.
With 13 defectors, the PDP regained control of the senate as the majority party.
The Senate has 109 seats.
Before Tuesday, the APC caucus had 64 members; the PDP caucus had 42, while the All Progressives Grand Alliance had one.
Two seats belonging to senators Ali Wakili (Bauchi-South) and Mustapha Bukar (Katsina-North), who died a few months ago are vacant. Both were APC members.
Following Tuesdays defections, PDP now has the majority with 55 members, with the APC having 50, and APGA and ADC having Senators Victor Umeh (Anambra-Central) and Murtala-Nyako, respectively.
Senate Minority Whip, Senator Philip Aduda (PDP, FCT), hailed the defections and mocked the APC.
The senate is now on recess till 26 September.