FORMER Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Abdulmumin Jibrin, has insisted that the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, must resign to allow for independent investigation into alleged budget infractions. Jibrin told newsmen on Tuesday in Abuja that some members of the lower chamber were already plotting to impeach Dogara.
Jibrin alleged that the speaker had on Monday begged members of the North-East caucus in the House for forgiveness over his role in the alleged padding of the 2016 budget. He, however, said that the request was rejected.
Jibrin explained that Dogara’s request that the matter should be investigated internally is not tenable as the rule of the House stated otherwise. He said, “When a grievous allegation of this nature is raised, there is a laid down rule to investigate such issue and it should not be investigated internally.
“The speaker should step down for proper investigation. Nobody is hunting him, but he should step down for a committee to do its work and investigate the issue. The speaker begged us that we should forgive him. He also begged for the principal officers. He said that the House should forget what happened in the 2016 budget.”
He said that he was not bothered if the House would suspend him for his actions, maintaining that he was “prepared for the worst because I know the risk I am taking; I am on the part of history”.
In a swift reaction, the spokesman of the House, Rep. Abddulrazak Namdas, in company with 15 members of the North-West caucus in the house, debunked Jibrin’s claims, saying they were false. According to Namdas, the essence of the meeting, which took place on Monday and presided over by the Speaker, was to deliberate on the way toward addressing the current economic recession in the country.
He said, “The speaker decided to meet with leaders of all caucuses to discuss the way forward on the current recession and the way forward when the House resumes. Allegation that the speaker begged for forgiveness and that members of North-West caucus passed a vote of no confidence on the Chief Whip, Rep. Ado Doguwa, is not true.
“That the meeting was done in bad light was not true as well; Jibrin has made these allegations before and has not said anything new. This house has its resolutions; we have our process and will commence its work soon. None of us is above the rule we have set. If Jibrin has issues, let him put up a motion and if he has the numbers then so be it.”
Also speaking, Rep. Ahmed Mustapha, one of the lawmakers who attended the meeting, said that 21 out of 24 lawmakers from Kano endorsed a vote of confidence on the leadership of the house. He said, “In the North-East, Gombe state has passed 100 per cent vote of confidence on the speaker while about 85 per cent of all the members of in the House has passed a vote of confidence on the leadership.” – Punch
— Sep 20, 2016 @ 18:50 GMT