Dogara Dares Jibrin Over Multi-Million Budget Padding

The leadership of the House of Representatives on Saturday dared its former Chairman, Committee on Appropriation, Abdulmumin Jibrin, to write a formal petition to the House with evidence backing his allegations against the Speaker, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, and three other principal officers.

He was also asked to petition the EFCC or the ICPC, both which had powers to arrest and prosecute the Speaker instead of engaging in a media campaign over his removal as a chairman.

Sources say the Dogara leadership had started to weigh punitive actions to take against Jibrin.

The Chairman, House Committee on Media and Public Affairs, Abdulrazak Namdas, disclosed this to Punch in Abuja. He stated that the media campaign, which served no purpose “other than to smear the image” of the institution, was not acceptable to members.

Namdas, an APC lawmaker from Adamawa State, explained, “We will deal with him appropriately in line with the relevant rules of the House.

“The rule of the House is not to engage in media campaign against its leadership. He has the option of writing a petition to the House, attached with his evidence, when we resume in September.

“Alternatively, let him write to the EFCC or ICPC for investigation. These agencies have powers to arrest and prosecute. These options are available and he should stop running down the House.”

Findings by Punch showed that “suspension from the services of the House for bringing its name to disrepute” had been considered and could be executed on resumption of the legislature from its annual recess on September 13.

A National Assembly official stated, “He (Jibrin) breached the rules and procedure of the House. He knows that what he has done is not the right approach.

“He is also passing the message that if a committee chairman is failing in discharging his responsibilities, the leadership should not remove him. We are aware of the crisis that was around the 2016 budget.

“This former chairman was largely responsible and the leadership even tried to save his seat against the demand of the majority of members that he should be removed. To have embarked on a media campaign against the leadership because he was relieved of his position is quite unfortunate”

But a source close to Jibrin informed Punch that the APC lawmaker from Kano was “frustrated” and resorted to media war because he was allegedly denied opportunities to use House channels to air his grievances against Dogara.

The source added, “There was a carefully weaved plot to stop him from speaking; they always turned him down. The Speaker in particular was avoiding Jibrin. They would convene executive sessions whenever they knew he was not in plenary and took decisions just to cut him off. Jibrin still doesn’t know the offence he committed that warranted his removal.”