Budget Padding: Dogara, Jibrin Set For Showdown As Reps Resume Tomorrow | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Budget Padding: Dogara, Jibrin Set For Showdown As Reps Resume Tomorrow

Dogara Begged Us To Forgive Budget Padding – Jibrin
Posted: Sep 19, 2016 at 4:45 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

*Speaker May Move To Suspend Former Appropriation C’ttee Chair


Ahmed Musa



Having concluded their six-week long annual vacation, federal lawmakers in the House of Representatives on resumption tomorrow may be greeted with another intense drama arising from the pending and un-answered allegations of abuse of office and corruption levelled against the House Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, and three other principal officers by the former appropriation committee chairman, Abdulmumin Jibrin, sources told Independent.

Enquiries by our correspondent revealed that members having been rattled by recent and ongoing events in the polity have placed issues such as the current economic recession in Nigeria which has left almost everybody broke, insecurity, 2016 budget padding and other national issues on the front burner with motions ready for deliberations.

The House is also likely to adjourn proceedings till Wednesday to honour a fallen colleague, late Hon. Elijah Adewale (APC, Lagos), who passed on just a day after the commencement of the long break.

According to insider sources, another sensitive issue that may come top on the agenda of the House is the perennial onslaught by herdsmen in some states of the federation.

However, Independent reliably gathered that the issue which is getting most members itching right now is the budget padding allegation that has rubbished the integrity and the image of the 8th House in the course of the long annual recess.

To this end, it was hinted that pro-Dogara lawmakers are poised to sponsor a motion on the floor of the House with a view to suspending Jibrin who spare-headed the lone-ranging activism via allegations of budget padding and the call to oust the speaker, his deputy, the minority leader as well as the chief whip.

Abdulmumin Jibrin (APC, Kano) was removed on July 20 over alleged mismanagement of the 2016 budget process and illegal insertions of projects into the document.

However, the embattled lawmaker in a bid to save his neck and his political career ignited a media fire against four principal officers of the House and nine other lawmakers.

Jibrin alleged in several of his statements that Speaker Yakubu Dogara, Deputy Speaker Yussuff Lasun, the Majority Whip, Alhassan Garba Ado Doguwa and the Minority Leader, Leo Ogor had cornered N40 billion out of N100 billion constituency projects allocated to the entire National Assembly.

A lawmaker, who spoke to Independent anonymously, disclosed that last Friday, September 16, Jibrin formally wrote the 359 lawmakers including Speaker Dogara stating why he decided to embark on a media war.

In the letter, Jibrin re-listed all the allegations as he had stated severally in all the statements he issued in the course of the controversy.

He also suggested ways and means as to how members can work to move the 8th House forward by insisting that an independent committee is set up to investigate the allegations he levelled against the four principal officers and nine committee chairmen.

The source stated “this is, however, subject to how the House leadership decides to handle the sensitive matter during plenary”.

He further disclosed that members are also expected to look into the issue of economic recession particularly now that inflation has risen to 17.6 percent in Nigeria.

Insecurity in the Niger Delta and the drafting of military personnel to the region is another issue that may be tabled before members to discuss following reports of harassment and intimidation of communities by military personnel in the region.