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I can’t wait for Nigeria’s ‘worst Senate’ to go – Sagay

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The Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), said on Thursday he could not wait for the current Senate, which he described as the worst since 1999, to go next year.

He faulted the lawmakers’ insistence on the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, personal appearance before them.

According to Sagay, such move smacks of personal vendetta against the IGP.

The PACAC chief said he was not a fan of the current Senate, which he accused of abdicating its responsibilities by its refusal to pass the 2018 budget almost halfway into the year.

He said the Senate lacks the moral justification to declare the IGP as unfit and incompetent to hold public office.

He said: “You know I have never been impressed by this Senate. It’s probably the worst we have ever had since the return to civilian rule. They are more concerned about exercising vain authority and power than in actually doing anything substantive for the country.

“These are people – the whole Senate – who would adjourn sitting and go to the Code of Conduct Tribunal in solidarity with their President. For everyday they go, the work of legislation is suspended. And they owe a duty to this country to make the laws for the order, peace and good government of Nigeria.

“Each time they abandon their legislative duties, they’re in fact committing a breach of their obligation, apart from the fact that doing that sort of thing is infantile.

“As if that was not enough, the whole Senate packed themselves again to visit Dino Melaye in the hospital. How rational is that? Why can’t they send a delegation of two or three people who would report back? So, it’s like a showoff of power and intimidation. I don’t think it’s really worthy of them to behave like that.”

Asked if the IGP should not have responded to the Senate’s invitations, Sagay said: “What I can deduce from the police response is that the IGP has been honouring the Senate’s invitations. You know the frequency and flippancy with which this Senate invites people. They can invite you today and next week they invite you again. And these (those invited) are very busy people.

“They (Senate) don’t care. They just want their vanity to be assuaged, for people to know they have power and are big and that someone is disobeying their authority.

“The IGP sent a very highly-placed representative. If the Senate really wanted information, why didn’t they get it from IGP’s deputy rather than insisting that the IGP himself must come? It suggests they’re turning the whole thing into some form of personal vendetta.

“As I said, I’m not impressed with this Senate because as we are speaking now, we are going to half of this year and they have refused to pass the budget.

“Is that a Senate that should be calling anybody unfit for anything? Are they doing their job? Budget passing is the most important job of the legislature. They have not done it six months into the year.

“They were angry with the executive for not sacking Ibrahim Magu. How did they respond? They refused to confirm any nominee, regardless of how urgent and important the assignment is for this nation. Honestly we are just praying for 2019 to come so this Senate can go.”

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