Written by Taiwo Adisa, Abuja Sunday, 05 August 2012
Details emerged at the weekend that the feud between the House of Representatives and the executive over the alleged nonimplementation of the 2012 budget was caused by the leakage of comments made at a secret meeting held by some ministers where the plot to impeach speaker of the House, Aminu Tambuwa, was raised.
Sources in Abuja told Sunday Tribune that the speaker got wind of a meeting of some six ministers immediately after the breakout of the $620,000 bribery saga involving Honourable Farouk Lawan and businessman, Femi Otedola.
According to sources, the ministers, who met at a secret location in Abuja, were said to have reviewed the speaker’s perceived antagonism to the president, especially his outburst during a Democracy Day lecture, and concluded that Tambuwal should be made to go, if he is implicated in the $620,000 bribery saga.
Hints of the meeting were said to have leaked to the speaker, making the House to employ some defensive mechanism.
It was gathered that the resolve of the speaker was to first stay afloat and that the House decided to sensitise the opposition base which ensured the victory by the current leadership in June 2011.
Though the House leadership could not confirm President Goodluck Jonathan gave his nod to the ministers’ meeting and alleged plot, it was gathered that the House decided to go on the offensive, in order not to be caught unawares.
One of the quick ways out of the perceived attack was the emergency session held by the House on the Farouk Lawan/Otedola bribe saga, where the speaker was able to secure a vote of confidence, while the second strategy is to attack the executive on the perceived non-implementation of the 2012 budget, sources confirmed at the weekend.
It was also confirmed that the House has designed measures to keep the impeachment threat in the news, notwithstanding the fact that its members are on recess at this time.
The House has also declared that the ongoing reconstruction efforts at nine of the nation’s airports failed to conform with due process.
The funds for the airport repairs are sourced from the Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) funds totaling $76 million. The House report is believed to be the source of the controversy on the usage of the BASA funds which is yet to abate.
Sources, however, said some concerned senators had intervened on both sides. While they had called the ministers involved to order and asked them to stop contemplating plotting impeachment of the speaker, they were also said to have made representation to their colleagues in the House to allow due process in the quest to ensure budget implementation.
Spokesman of the House, Honourable Zakari Mohammed, who claimed to have heard the story before Sunday Tribune called him for clarification, however, said in a telephone interview that he was not aware of any plot against the speaker.
He said members have implicit confidence in Tambuwal and that the members believed that they were ready to defend his position.
“We have implicit confidence in Tambuwal and nobody from outside can give us our leader. We will just insist that the right thing is done.
“The speaker is at home with everybody; all these things they are saying are not true,” he said.
New York Times
Advertise with us
Rules And Regulations