Senator Muhammed Ali Ndume was on Wednesday suspended for six months by the Senate over allegations against Senate President Dr Bukola Saraki and Senator Dino Melaye.
Ali was found guilty of not “making due diligence” before filing a petition against the Saraki and Melaye.
His suspension was based on the recommendation of the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions considered by the lawmakers at the Wednesday plenary session.
The Senate had asked its Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public
Petitions to investigate Ndume’s allegation against Saraki for alleged
importation of bullet-proof car with fake Customs duty certificate and
Melaye for certificate forgery.
The resolution to launch the investigation followed a motion of privilege by Senator Mohammed Ali Ndume (Borno South).
Ndume drew the attention of his colleagues to a publication that Saraki
sanctioned the invitation of the Comptroller General of Nigeria Customs
Service (NCS), Col. Hameed Ali (rtd) to appear in uniform to throw
light on the controversial import duty payment on old vehicles because
the Service impounded his (Saraki’s) bullet-proof Range Rover Sport
Utility Vehicle on the orders of Ali.
On Melaye, Ndume referred the
Senate to a publication by a national newspaper that Melaye did not
graduate from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
Ndume told the Senate that an online platform claimed Melaye did not obtain a degree in Geography from ABU, Zaria.
The Borno South lawmaker, who prayed the Senate to investigate the
issues, noted that there was nothing untoward about investigating the
He said a former Speaker of the House of
Representatives Salisu Buhari was accused of certificate forgery and
investigated to clear his name.
Ndume added that a former Senate President, Adolphus Wabara, was also accused of corruption and investigated.
He noted that Wabara was also given opportunity to clear his name.
Katsina State Governor Aminu Bello Masari, he said, was also accused of
certificate forgery and given opportunity to clear his name.
said another presiding officer of the House of Representatives, Dimeji
Bankole, was also accused and investigated to clear his name.
said: “This matter borders on our privileges. One has to do with Senator
Bukola Saraki, the Senate President and it was reported in a paper; I
have it here. The newspaper said the Senate is on vengeance after
Nigeria Customs Service seized Senator Saraki’s bullet-proof Range Rover
over fake documents.
“My colleagues that are following events,
particularly online, have seen or heard or read the rain of abuses on
this Senate and the misconception of the fact that we invited the
Customs boss based on a very unpopular policy that affects the people we
represent, but now we are faced with this.
“During the 4th
Assembly, Salisu Buhari was accused of certificate forgery. He was
investigated and determined after that. In the 5th Assembly, Bello
Masari was accused of certificate forgery (secondary school). He was
investigated and was cleared.
“In the 6th Senate, Dimeji Bankole was
accused of not having NYSC certificate, it was investigated and he
showed his NYSC certificate.
“Now, that brings me to the second
matter in the National Assembly. In the 4th Assembly, Senate President
Adolphus Wabara was accused of collecting a bribe and it was
investigated and determined. So, a lot of precedence has been set.
“Now, the second matter of privileges affects my colleague Dino Melaye
and it is in the paper today? Therefore, accordingly, I will appeal we
refer the matter to Ethics and Privileges to investigate so that our
colleagues would be cleared and this Senate will stand as it supposed
After the plenary, Melaye described the issue Ndume raised about him as a welcome development.
The Kogi West senator noted that democracy is about investigation, where no senator is above investigation.
He said those bandying the report that he did not graduate from ABU were obsessed with him.
He said Nigerians would not be surprised that one day the same people would say he is not a Nigerian.
Melaye, however, assured he would submit himself to investigation as a law-abiding citizen of the country.
He added that as a member of the committee saddled with the
responsibility to investigate him, he would excuse himself from the
committee, unless invited.
Melaye, who said he would not be deterred
by negative reports about him, noted that he has seven degrees already
pursuing the eight one.
He said ABU would not allow him to do higher degrees, if he did not have a degree certificate.
Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, who presided over the plenary, asked Ndume to lay the documents he has.
Ndume submitted some newspaper publications.
Ekweremadu referred the two matters to the Senator Samuel Anyanwu-led Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions.
He gave the committee four weeks to report back.
Meanwhile the Senate today after receiving the reports of its committee that investigated the two Senators cleared Senator Bukola Saraki and Dino Melaye of the allegations