As the National Assembly resumes plenary today after two months of recess, the alleged padding of the 2016 budget and the current economic recession facing the country will certainly be in the front burner in the House of Representatives.
The House had on July 20, 2016 adjourned plenary to September 13, 2016 but was forced to postpone its resumption date to September 20, 2016 due to the Eid-el-Kabir celebration.
Amidst the tension and anxiety that has characterised its resumption, a number of topical national issues will readily occupy the attention of the 360 lawmakers as they converge today for the business of lawmaking.
Nigerian Pilot reliably gathered yesterday that top in its business of the day is the budget padding allegation levelled on the leadership of the House by former Appropriations Committee Chairman, Hon Abdulmumin Jibrin as well as the recession the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration had plunged the country’s economy into.
While on recess, Jibrin had accused the Speaker, Hon. Yakubu Dogara; Deputy Speaker, Hon. Yussuff Lasun; Chief Whip, Hon. Alhassan Ado-Doguwa and the House Minority Leader, Hon. Leo Ogor of padding the budget discreetly and dishonestly to the tune of N40billion.
He even went to the headquarters of the Nigeria Police, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, and the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission, ICPC to submit what he claims to be a petition against the accused lawmakers.
He had even appeared before the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, led by Prof. Itse Sagay as well as the Special Investigative Panel, SIP, led by an Assistant Inspector-General of Police, AIG Amodu Ali (retd) to prove his allegations.
Ahead of today’s resumption, our correspondent was reliably informed that there had been series of meetings by the pro- Dogara’s lawmakers to firmly stand behind the speaker and indeed the leadership of the House.
It was also gathered that since Jibrin was unable to use external forces to get the speaker reconvene the House before today, there were plans to get him impeach by some pro-Jibrin’s lawmakers calling for the speaker to resign so as to allow for thorough probe.
Having gotten wind of this plot, the lawmakers loyal to the speaker are planning to move a vote of confidence on the speaker and the leadership of the House.
Aside taking disciplinary action on Jibrin for alleged violating the House rule, the lower chamber also intends to refer the budget padding allegation to the House Committee on Ethics and Privileges led by Hon. Ossai Nicholas Ossai (PDP, Delta).
As part of its activities today, the lawmakers will also deliberate extensively on the recession the country is currently battling with by summoning the Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun; Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udo Udoma as well as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN; Godwin Emeifele.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Chief of Staff to the speaker, Hon. CID Maduabum has denied giving money to some people to tell the truth about his foreign account they discovered in the UK.
He described Jibrin as a deranged psychopath and a drowning man catching on all straws to rescue himself from a deep hole.
Maduabum said his latest allegation had shown that corruption and lies were an essential part of Jibrin’s DNA.
According to him, “He obviously thinks that everybody must be bribed to act patriotically to expose his corruption and nefarious activities.
“I feel sorry for the media that unwittingly play into his hands by publishing his continuously false and libelous vituperations. Hon Jibrin is so unintelligent that he has not seen that his pattern is an open one.
“Once you say anything against him, he immediately manufactures some imaginary bribe being given to the person by persons he picks at a whim. I have chosen to respond once again not because Hon Jibrin is worthy of a reply, but just to set the records straight”.
Jibrin on Monday accused Maduabum of giving money to some people to tell the truth about his foreign account recently discovered in the UK.

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