The Nigerian Senate has asked the minister of power, works and housing, Babatunde Fashola (SAN), to resign his appointment if he was burdened by the volume of work at his ministry.
Babatunde Fashiola/ Senate
The chairman Senate committee on appropriations, Senator Danjuma Goje, made the call on Wednesday, July 5, in reaction to statement credited to Fashola where he faulted the lawmakers for unilaterally altering allocations of the ministry of works in the 2017 budget.
Angered by Fashola’s comments the Senate accused the minister of misleading the public and blackmailing lawmakers over the alterations made by in the budget.
Senator Danjuma Goje, speaking during plenary, raised a point of order where he said Fashola was a minister and no longer a governor and should reflect that in his speech, the Punch reports.
“Initially, I wanted to come under a motion but, yesterday, the House of Representatives took up the matter. Since we are on the same page with the House, I feel I should not come under a motion. But I will like to seize this opportunity to advise the minister that he should remember that he is now a minister and should behave like a minister,” Senator Goje said.
He reminded Fashola that he was dealing with the National Assembly, not the Lagos state house of assembly.
He said:” If the job is too much for him – the ministry is too big; it comprises three ministries, which are works, housing and power; if he cannot adjust, then, he should do the honourable thing. He should so the needful.
“No amount of blackmail by him; no amount of propaganda by him or his surrogates will stop this National Assembly from discharging its duties in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution. We have sworn to uphold and protect this Constitution, and this we will do to the end of this Assembly.
“For now, I will cease fire and watch to see how the House will handle him. If he is well handled there, we will leave him with them. But if we are not satisfied and they pass him to us, then, we will take him over.”
Meanwhile, Senator Dino Melaye representing Kogi West, has said that Ibrahim Magu does not qualify to be the substantive chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Melaye while contributing to a debate on the floor of the Nigerian Senate on Wednesday, July 5, mocked Magu saying his mates were area commanders and divisional police officers (DPOs).
The embattled senator wondered why Magu after being rejected by the Senate “is still parading himself as the chairman of the EFCC.