Saraki asks Jega to name bribe seek­ing law­mak­ers

Daily Trust - - NEWS - By Is­mail Mu­dashir

Se­nate Pres­i­dent Bukola Saraki yes­ter­day chal­lenged the for­mer chair­man of the In­de­pen­dent Na­tional Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (INEC) Pro­fes­sor At­tahiru Jega to name law­mak­ers who re­quested bribe to dis­charge their du­ties.

Saraki spoke at yes­ter­day’s ple­nary ses­sion, when Sen­a­tor Isah Hamma Misau (APC, Bauchi) raised a point of or­der over Jega’s al­le­ga­tions against the fed­eral law­mak­ers.

Jega had while de­liv­er­ing a lec­ture on Mon­day for this year’s Democ­racy Day, ac­cused mem­bers of the Na­tional As­sem­bly of be­ing the most cor­rupt of the arms of govern­ment, by seek­ing bribes to carry out their con­sti­tu­tional du­ties.

The for­mer INEC chair said, “Some chair­men of com­mit­tees at the Na­tional As­sem­bly are no­to­ri­ous for seek­ing for bribes. I spoke to quite a num­ber of chief ex­ec­u­tives, who com­plained of high de­mand for bribes from mem­bers of the Na­tional As­sem­bly in the name of the so-called over­sight func­tions.”

Misau had while rais­ing the point of or­der asked Jega to be bold to name the law­mak­ers who de­manded for bribe.

“If we re­ally want to fight cor­rup­tion and want to help the govern­ment, he would not be mak­ing such state­ments with­out men­tion­ing the com­mit­tee chair­men and those who gave him that sort of in­for­ma­tion. I felt em­bar­rassed. We need the pro­fes­sor to throw more light on the al­le­ga­tion,” he said.

Saraki said he and Speaker Yakubu Dog­ara were highly em­bar­rassed when Jega made the al­le­ga­tion.

“I was at the pro­gramme, my­self and the speaker and we were highly em­bar­rassed by this kind of com­ment. All of us are com­mit­ted to the fight against cor­rup­tion. But I be­lieve it doesn’t help the fight against cor­rup­tion, it is a slight to the in­tegrity of some of us, where such a state­ment is made.

“If he has those kinds of ev­i­dences, he should bring it for­ward. Be­cause to say that, is to sug­gest that ev­ery mem­ber of the Na­tional As­sem­bly is part of this even those who are not part of this are con­dol­ing this ac­tion which is far from the truth,” he said.

He said as a re­spected Pro­fes­sor, Jega should come out and men­tion the bribe seek­ers.

“If he can’t come out and name, then he should not make such brand­ing state­ments. Go­ing for­ward to all distin­guished and re­spected Nige­ri­ans, in is­sues that have to do with the in­sti­tu­tions and a par­lia­ment, if there are cases like this, we have al­ways said that we are not go­ing to cover up for any­body and fu­ture ac­cu­sa­tions, they should name them and see what the in­sti­tu­tion would do in try­ing to en­sure that the nec­es­sary sanc­tions are taken,” he said.

Photo: FMMSD

From left: Per­ma­nent Sec­re­tary, Min­istry of Mines and Steel De­vel­op­ment, Dr Ab­dulka­dir Muazu; Min­is­ter of Mines and Steel De­vel­op­ment, Dr. Kay­ode Fayemi; and Min­is­ter of State for Mines and Steel De­vel­op­ment, Abubakar Bawa Bwari, dur­ing a vale­dic­tory press brief­ing by Fayemi in Abuja yes­ter­day

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