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» » BUDGET PADDING:HOUSE OF REPS RAISE COMMITTEE TO PROBE JUBRIN..VOWS NOT TO APPEAR BEFORE PANEL
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Sacked House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation Chairman Abdulmumin Jibrin (APC, Kano) has vowed not to appear before Committee on Ethics and Privileges mandated to investigate him for bringing the House into disrepute with his utterances.

But Timothy Golu  (PDP, Plateau) said (Jibrin) must be sanctioned. He, however, added that members were ready to forgive Jibrin if he apologises to the House and Nigerians.

Jibrin said he was willing to appear before the Committee only if its proceedings would be public and witnessed by Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), among others.

Jibrin, in a statement yesterday said what happened on the floor was a script written by the Speaker.

He urged his colleagues to live above blackmail and deal urgently and decisively with the allegations of individual corruption.

He said he watched events on the floor carefully and observed that “rather than open up the matter for discussion in view of the public interest it has generated and allow me to brief my colleagues, an opportunity I have been denied for several months, Mr Speaker deployed some legislative tricks and theatrics to save the day.

“In a move that smacks of abuse of process, Speaker Dogara granted under point of order, an opportunity to the Chairman of Business and Rules Committee who started with a speech then suddenly transited to a motion under privilege – a clear case of manipulation and gross abuse of the House rule. This is the easiest resort since the attempts to secure a vote of confidence had woefully failed.

“The motion was therefore passed and referred to the Committee on Ethics and Privilege with one week to submit its report.

“The grand plan is to dilute the ongoing external investigation by the police and EFCC and use the Ethics Committee for a soft landing.

“But what happened on the floor of the House today is just the end of another beginning.

“Despite all these and since I can substantiate the allegations I raised with cogency, I will take up the opportunity provided by the Ethics committee to state my case under the condition that the hearing will be public and will allow the press, CSOs, NGOs, NLC, ASUU, NANS, NBA and the general public to witness the entire proceedings.

“This is the only way that I can have the comfort and confidence that the proceedings, the investigations and the outcome will not be manipulated or compromised.

“I am ready to appear before the committee even today if the proceedings will be public.

Predictably, in his speech, Mr Speaker tried to drag the entire House into the matter to give the impression that the entire House is the accused.

“I wish to state for the umpteenth time that the allegations I raised are against the quartet of Speaker Yakubu Dogara, Deputy Speaker Yusuf Lasun, House Whip Alhassan Doguwa, Minority Leader Leo Ogor and few other members NOT the Honourable House as an institution.

Source:The Nation

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