Drama as nominee for NCC job wants Senate scrapped
• Reps flay executive directors positions in FERMA
It was drama yesterday as a presidential nominee for the membership of the governing board of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Aliyu Saidu Abubakar, declared that the Senate should be scrapped because it consumes too much money from the treasury.
Abubakar, who is from the North-East, made the statement before the Senate Committee on Communications that was screening him for the job.
He said the payment of huge sums of money as transport allowances in addition to expensive vehicles amounts to clear economic loss to the country.
When the committee confronted him with several photographs of how he had at different times led protests against the continued existence of the Senate, particularly at the gate of the National Assembly, Abubakar maintained that he had no regret for his actions and added that he was still convinced that the Senate was an avenue for the wastage of scarce economic resources of the country.
Abubakar, in an interview with journalists after the screening, insisted that the Senate should be scrapped. “They asked me whether I was part of the group that agitated for the scrapping of the Senate and I said yes because of so many things involved in the Senate and their budget.
“They asked me to state the reasons we were agitating for the scrapping of the Senate. I said it was because of their huge budget. They consume a lot of resources from the government, they put it in their own budget. Also, they have transport allowances and, yet, they budget a lot of money to acquire vehicles.”
Abubakar confirmed that the panelists brought out several photographs showing him during the ‘Occupy National Assembly’ protests, including the ones held at the National Assembly and in Bauchi, which he did not deny.
When asked if he still stood by his words that it was a waste to keep the Senate and that it should be scrapped, Abubakar replied: “The Senate must go because something has to be done to cut down the expenses of the Senate. I still maintain that.”
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has faulted the authorities of the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) over the creation of the positions of executive directors for the outfit.
The House at the plenary presided over by the Deputy Speaker, Sulaimon Lasun yesterday, also called on the authorities to declare a security emergency in the southern Kaduna senatorial district.
The resolution followed the adoption of a motion sponsored by Mr. Kamale Adamu and four others.
The House mandated its committee on FERMA to investigate the unilateral, arbitrary and unauthorised creation of the positions of executive directors in the agency in violation of section 2 (2) of the FERMA Establishment Act 2002.
The lawmakers also resolved to probe the operational activities of FERMA from 2015 till date, especially the use of billions of naira released to it from September 2015 till date in ensuring that Nigerian roads were fixed.
While moving the motion, Kamale expressed concern that the creation of the positions of acting executive directors in FERMA by the acting managing director amounts to executive recklessness and a violation of the law.