Nigeria: Senator Calls for Probe of National Assembly's Budget Under Saraki

National assembly.

A federal lawmaker, Abdullahi Adamu (APC-Nasarawa), has called for probe into budgetary allocations to the National Assembly.

Mr Adamu made the call while speaking with journalists in Abuja on Sunday.

He said an audit had become necessary in view of the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki's refusal to vacate his seat after defecting from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

According to him, Mr Saraki's refusal to vacate his seat after defecting to a minority party could be because he has something to hide.

He said, "I call for a forensic audit of the finances of the parliament which has been thoroughly messed up under the President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki.

"We did not know what Saraki's agenda is. As we go through this tenure of his, the more we see things being unearthed.

"For him to refuse to move or leave the chair, there must be a reason for it.

"As the Chairman of the National Assembly, there is so much that he is doing that we want to take a look at.

"If he is clean let him move away and accept that there should be a forensic audit of the national assembly funds under his watch. Simple. Let him move so that we will see what he is sitting over.

"We have seen his unbridled ambition. We have seen now that even though the odds are so much against him, he went to a party that is now losing ground and that is now a minority in the National Assembly."

On continued call by the leadership of the APC for Mr Saraki to vacate his seat, Mr Adamu said "it is pretty obvious that Saraki's influence has diminished completely.

"Because he has lost the respect and confidence of majority of senators and well-meaning Nigerians, but he's just latching on to that seat because of the privileges he enjoys.

"Ordinarily, Saraki needed not wait for any pressure to be mounted on him before he resigns from his position as Senate president.

"You cannot command any respect or assert your authority as a leader when majority of those you're supposed to lead have lost confidence in you and are opposed to your leadership.

"So, if he is a self-respecting person, he does not even need anyone to ask that he should throw in the towel because he and his PDP have lost majority in the Senate."

He stressed that Mr Saraki was entitled to aspire for any office, including that of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

However, he said, "he should not try to destroy the system just because he wants to realise that ambition at all cost."

On who succeeds Mr Saraki if he exits his seat as President of the Senate, the lawmaker said, "you do not cross a bridge before you get to it.

"All the speculations about the purported rift is aimed at dividing us and distracting us from our determination to assert the interest of our party which enjoys the majority in the Senate."

He added that the lawmakers were united and that the party had the goodwill of Nigerians in view of progresses being made in different sectors of the economy.

While citing the party's victory in recent by-elections in Katsina, Kogi and Bauchi states, the lawmaker said it was a sign of victory for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) come 2019.

"They were the clearest pointers to the victories that would be recorded by President Muhammadu Buhari and the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) during the 2019 General Elections.

Mr Adamu further said that his party's victory was not only "remarkable", but pointed to the confidence that Nigerians had in President Muhammadu Buhari's administration.

He said the victories recorded would boost government's effort to accelerate empowerment of the ordinary citizens in order to reduce the level of poverty in the land.

The senator stressed the need for the APC to galvanise all its teeming members, especially members of Mr. President's cabinet to accelerate the pace in executing capital projects as another avenue for deepening the rising public confidence in the administration.


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