‘PDP didn’t direct us to implement ruling on 37 lawmakers’
Rep. Tijjani Yusuf represents Kaba-Bubu/Ijumu Federal Constituency of Kogi State. He is a member of the PDP and deputy chairman of the House committee on ICT. In this interview, he says the PDP did not direct them to implement last week’s court ruling on
without caucus and ours is one of men and women of honour. We have lawyers with up to 20 years at the bar amongst us. Do we need party leaders or the presidency to tell us what is in the constitution as lawmakers? All we are saying is that the law should be allowed to take its course. I always insist that in this country we do not punish offenders.
In January, 2012 when the House convened a special session on a Sunday, you were the sponsor of that special motion and it concerns subsidy, looking back and with the feelers we are getting that fuel subsidy will be removed, do you still hold the belief that subsidy should be retained?
If you had listened to me on the day in question, I said I was not opposed to the removal of subsidy. I am an economist. You do not subsidize consumption, but rather, you subsidise production. Anywhere you subsidise consumption, it’s flawed, but the procedure of taking away subsidy should have human face. We met and told them that we should start in states by having palliatives.
If you want to take away subsidy from Nigerians, plan it because if you do not, the common man on the street will face the challenges he cannot bear and he will revolt. I never opposed subsidy and till date I am not, but I insist that you plan so that the masses do not suffer unduly for no fault of theirs.
Debates are now done on party basis, what is responsible for this?
That is a very good observation and if you observed, without sounding immodest for some months now, I’ve not done anything and it is because of that reason and we have raised this. With the situation we are now, we either make the House return to the part of honour or explode to what you use to see during the 6th Assembly when disorder was the order of the day.
Fortunately many of our colleagues share this opinion. There is no parliament without contestation, but my advice is that we either return to the House we used to have or the bubble bursts.