SACKED Appropriation Chairman in the House of Representatives, Hon Abdulmumin Jibrin over the weekend said he could only appear before the House Committee on Ethics and Privilege if there is a Speaker Pro Tempore who will now constitute an adhoc committee to investigate the allegations he levelled against the Speaker, Hon Yakubu Dogara and other principal officers. Jibrin also gave condition that the proceedings will be public with access given to both print and electronic media, Civil Society Organisations, Non- Governmental Organisations, Nigerian Labour Congress, Nigerian Bar Association, Academic Staff Union of Universities, National Association of Nigerian Students and the general public. In a letter addressed to the committee dated September 23, 2016, the former appropriation committee chairman said it had become necessary for the conditions to be met because from some public and private comments made, the Chairman of the Ethics and Privilege Committee, Hon Ossai Nicholas Ossai probing the allegations has become an interested party in the matter and his ability to be impartial was in doubt. He said he was shocked when he discovered the entire hearing was not even to probe the allegations he made, but to probe a so called breach of privilege of members and misconduct by him. According to the letter, “To refresh your memory, I stated in the letter that “The Speaker Pro Tempore should constitute an Adhoc Committee to investigate these allegations in collaboration with the on- going external investigation by the anti-graft agencies. This has become necessary because from some public and private comments made by the incumbent Chairman of the Ethics and Privilege Committee, he has become an interested party in the matter and his ability to be impartial is in doubt. Also some of the members, including myself, who sit as members of the committee are interested party in the matter.” “You called me after reading my letter and tried to explain your public statement and further made efforts to convince me that you will indeed be impartial. I listened to you but I had my doubts. “Subsequent events after the sitting of Wednesday 21st September and specifically our conversation on phone when you called me on the 21st and 22nd have further affirmed my misgivings and convinced me beyond reasonable doubt that you CANNOT be impartial. “You will recall that when you called me on 21st, you tried to assuage my doubts and encouraged me to appear. I told you clearly I will appear under the condition that the proceedings will be public with access given to both print and electronic media, Civil Society Organisations, Non- Governmental Organisations, Nigerian Labour Congress, Nigerian Bar Association, Academic Staff Union of Universities, National Association of Nigerian Students and the general public. “I made it clear to you that it is under such arrangement that I will feel comfortable that the investigation, proceedings and outcome will not be manipulated or compromised. I requested that these assurances be included in the letter of invitation you will send to me. I cited an instance, asking you “what if on a hearing day, the public and press are shut out or are prevented from having access to House knowing the extend of the powers of the Speaker? What will happen?” You promised to get back to me the following day. “The next day you called we had the same conversation and concluded that you will put everything in writing. You can imagine my shock and disappointment when I saw your verge letter. Even more shocking was when I discovered the entire hearing is not to probe my allegations but to probe a so called breach of privilege of members and misconduct by me. “Mr Chairman, your letter clearly indicates that mischief is in the offing. You are inviting an accused to appear before you without telling him his offense. You did not state how I breached the privileges of the House and Members. You did not state the name of which Member’s privileges I breached so that I can take on the Member or Members and see if they can stand corruption test. You did not state the precedents and practices that I breached. You did not state what I did that amounted to misconduct so even if I intend to attend, I can know what exactly I am being accused of and come prepared. “Mr. Chairman, what further deepens my pessimism is the fact that in your letter, you indicated that you were inviting me to appear before your committee on Monday 26th September, 2016, but surprisingly you announced to the press that I shunned your invitation. This is clear indication that the outcome
of your “investigation” is already predetermined. “May I draw your attention to the fact that the privileges of the House and Members do not accord the former and later immunity to being exposed if involved in corrupt practices and equally exposing budget fraud and corruption does not amount to misconduct. These are all service to the nation worthy of commendation. I strongly believe that you will be doing a great service to the country if you concentrate on investigating the privileges of Nigerians that Speaker Dogara and few other members have grossly breached and further investigate the misconduct therein. “You also did not find it worthy to investigate the grievous allegations I made against Mr Speaker and few others or even why the Speaker is yet to address all the allegations I made against him and summit himself to the security and anti-graft agencies to clear his name two months after I submitted my petitions. “It is obvious that the Committee on Ethics cannot be impartial in dealing with this matter. I urge you and the Members of your Committee not to join this grand plan against the people of Nigeria to use
the House as a shield to cover a small cabal which instituted corruption in the House for their benefits. I call on you to fear God and search your conscience. “Mr Chairman, I am on a crusade to expose corruption in the House and push for reforms that will clean up the House for the Nigerian people. There is no going back on this and I will continue this struggle even if I end up alone. I stand on all my allegations against Mr Speaker and 3 other Principal Officers and will pursue the matter in collaboration with the anti-graft agencies, other groups and well- meaning Nigerians until justice is served. The House does not belong to 360 Members but 200 million Nigerians. Nobody can cow me into silence”. Meanwhile, House Committee Chairman on Rules and Business, Hon Emmanuel Orker-Jev on Friday appeared before the Ossai led committee where he gave evidenced against Jibrin’s sundry act of misconduct and prayed the committee to apply necessary sanctions as approved by House rules against any member guilty of misconduct. He said that allegations made by Jibrin were false, scandalous and had impinged on the image of the National Assembly.


Ad:See How you can turn $500 into $10,000 Click HERE For Details.
SHARE