Obasanjo Taught National Assembly Members Corruption – Kurfi | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Obasanjo Taught National Assembly Members Corruption – Kurfi

Posted: Aug 4, 2016 at 4:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Honourable Danlami Mohammed Kurfi, elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), represents Dutsenma/Kurfi Federal constituency in Katsina state. In this interview with a group of journalists including JULIET OYOYO, he spoke on the issue of budget padding controversy which has become a burning issue in the National Assembly and other issues. Excerpts:

The former chairman of the Appropriation Committee, Abdulmumin Jibrin has alleged that the some principal officers of the House of Representatives are corrupt. What is your take on this?

Jibrin is an arrogant man and he is trying to deceive Nigerians with all his allegations against the House and some of its presiding officers. In the committee he chaired before he was sacked, he had no iota of human relationship with his members and same for the Kano state caucus of his party where he came from.

All the activities of his committee were shrouded in secrecy between him and the consultant of that committee. He wasn’t carrying any of the members along at all. To start with, why didn’t he say all these rubbish before he was sacked as Appropriation committee chairman?

He wants to present himself as a good guy but he didn’t know that he is giving the impression that someone can collude with him to destroy Nigeria to get what he wants to get. He should have spoken up since if he is indeed a good person that he is trying to make us believe, of which he is not.
All these so-called evidence of constituency projects he is presenting now are just an after-thought. I can tell you that the constituency project he is talking about now is not an illegal thing.

For example, I have a constituency project that is in the budget and my people are expecting it because that is what they want. But I don’t know who will be the contractor for that project and I don’t have any interest in it. All I am out to see is that the project is delivered in my constituency. I want Jibrin to remember that at the last Assembly, he had a project of over N1.2billion in the budget. There are many projects that he collected the money but deceived his constituency by not delivering them.

Are you saying that the House is not guilty?

The house or its leadership is not guilty whatsoever of anything. There was nothing illegal about constituency project. The ousted Appropriation Committee chairman was only looking for an excuse for his incompetence, inordinate ambition and questionable character. For example, when a reporter turned in a news story to his editor and the editor, who is superior to the reporter, would edit the story by removing some points and adding others. So, when he edits it, do you call that padding? So, this is the same thing that happened in the National Assembly. Jibrin is incompetent to handle a committee. People always shout at him whenever he gets up to speak. That is why he stopped standing up to talk in the chambers.

What is the position of the members of the House of Representatives on this?

We are stoutly behind our leaders because they have done nothing wrong, neither have they deviated from the rules of the House. If Jibrin have evidence, he should take them to the EFCC. He can’t scribble some illogical and irrelevant stuff on pieces of paper and force them down our throats. Those ones can’t stand as evidence to his spurious allegations.

What is your take over the comment of former president Obasanjo on the National Assembly?

Obasanjo is a former President and he made many contributions to the development of Nigeria. But I want to tell you that the administration of Obasanjo was the one that taught the National Assembly corruption. Some members of the National Assembly were offered as much as N300million to give their support for the alleged Third term ambition of Obasanjo. Some collected and some didn’t. But we thank God that the whole project failed. So, if Obasanjo says that the National Assembly is corrupt, I don’t think people will be surprised because he expects up till now that the people he knew or taught corruption are still there.
But I want to tell Nigerians that those set of people that Obasanjo taught corruption are no longer in both the Green and Red Chambers, they have left. This is a new National Assembly that comes with a gospel of change and discipline. There is no agency or parastatal that can say we gave the National Assembly this or that to do things for us. If there is anything like that, let them come out. We are not corrupt as opined by him; we are here to uplift our people and our nation.

Do you still think President Buhari’s administration will uplift the country given the various hues and cries in the country?

We should thank God that He gave us Buhari. I doubt if there would still be Nigeria if Buhari didn’t come in when he did. Look at the issue of Boko Haram, they were taking our local governments at will and they are bent on turning the country upside down.

It was just by a small magnitude; Nigeria would have been destroyed because people have started leaving our country. But God saved us through Buhari. He has tried his best to decimate the insurgents and we have relative peace in the North East now.

Yes, our people are crying that there is no money and food, but I want to implore them to be patient. By the grace of God, Nigeria will return to her glory days where all will eat and be satisfied. They should not see this time as the end of everything but together we must be patient and prayerful for our nation.  The reformation of this country cannot come once, it’s a gradual process.