Friday, August 12

Budget Padding Scandal: ‘Nobody can probe us’ - Dogara

The House of Representatives Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, has said no member of the legislature can be probed by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), the police or Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) for performing his or her legislative duty.
Citing the Legislative Houses Powers and Privileges Act, sections 24, 30, Dogara said the activities of the National Assembly are privileged.

Dogara also said lawmakers are empowered to make laws, the Appropriation Act inclusive, without being questioned. This is coming after the Speaker reportedly snubbed a police committee that was inaugurated to investigate the budget padding allegations levelled against him by Abdulmumin Jibrin.

Dogara also said “They cannot be grounds for any investigation into the procedures or proceedings against a member of parliament; either the Speaker or the President of the Senate; once they are done in the exercise of their proper functions.

“The law is there; you can go and read it. This is in order to give independence to the legislature. If the legislature is not independent, we can’t do anything. If whatever you say on the floor of the House or either in the committee is subject to litigation, then all the members will be in court. At the end of the day, when debate comes, you cannot even air your view.

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