Member of People’s Democratic Party in the House of Representatives Sunday accused the Executive of deliberately undermining the independence of the National Assembly.
The PDP caucus in the House of Representatives said in a statement that the plan to ridicule the National Assembly is being spearheaded by unnamed “unconscionable officials of the Executive arm of government.”
Reps Kingsley Chinda, who signed the statement, said that three officials of the government walked out on the lawmakers in recent weeks was no coincidence.
“Recall three of several events of the past few weeks. On Thursday 16th July 2020, a Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Labour walked out on the House Committee on Diaspora unprovoked,” Chinda said in the statement.
“Festus Keyamo, Minister of State for Labour, who appeared before the Joint Ad-Hoc Committee on Employment, Labour and Productivity walked out on the Committee over a disagreement that arose between him and the Committee on two specific questions: (1) What modalities the Ministry of Labour had put in place for the successful execution of the alleged Public Works’ employment scheme of the Ministry; (2) Why was the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) not mandated to oversee the said Public Works’ employment scheme, since it was within the statutory remit of the Directorate. Keyamo chose to walk out on the Committee. No matter how plausible his reasons are, a walkout on the Parliament is unacceptable.
“A few days ago, the Acting Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Daniel Pondei, walked out on the Committee of the House of Representatives charged with the responsibility of investigating the financial scandal that has rocked the Commission. Again, regardless of his reasons, a walkout on the Parliament is inexcusable.
“The three arms of government are empowered to work in sync, within the bounds of the basic law, and deliver on the responsibilities and mandates assigned to them by the Constitution. No one arm is superior to the other. However, the Executive arm has gone about itself like the Leviathan, taking the legislature and judiciary prisoners. This should not be so in a constitutional democracy in which the Constitution is held out as inviolate and inviolable. To hijack other arms of government, supplant them into obsequious rubber stamps arms, is to subvert the Constitution.
“If the totalizing and unconscionable behaviours of members of the Executive arm enhance governance in our country, our position here would have been made tenuous by the fact of the good governance that their misbehaviours enthrone; but it is not the case.
“There is a total collapse of all governance and structural systems in the country due to bad or near absence of governance. We groan under a government where armed robbers have now seized our highways; operatives of the State Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Forces have taken over the streets of our towns and cities, killing and maiming Nigerian youths. Worse still, security is at its lowest ebb. Terrorists, kidnappers and bandits have taken over vast ungoverned swathes of our country. Katsina, the home state of the Commander-in-Chief is on its knees. In fact, everywhere is unsafe in our country. The internal security of the country has been compromised as Boko Haram continues to inflict violence and death on Nigerians, while President Buhari continues to sound like the broken record.
“The behaviours of appointees of the Executive arm are mere smokescreens to create a diversion from high level of corruption of the executive arm.
“Keyamo’s 774,000 public works jobs are ATM s directed at siphoning money from the treasury akin to the school feeding programme of pupils at home. No more. The beneficiaries are to earn N20,000 for three months totalling N60,000.00 and N58billion has been voted for these phantom jobs? How else can we explain a non-sustainable scheme, with no end value.”