Posted by By Chiawo Nwankwo and John Ameh, Abuja on
The House of Representatives on Friday said that there were genuine fears about the Federal Government’s commitment to the anti-corruption war, given its role in recent events around the former Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Nuhu Ribadu.
The House of Representatives on Friday said that there were genuine fears about the Federal Government’s commitment to the anti-corruption war, given its role in recent events around the former Chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Nuhu Ribadu. It said Ribadu’s demotion from Assistant Inspector-General of Police to Deputy Commissioner of Police and the surreptitious moves to withdraw him from the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru, Plateau State, barely one month to the completion of his course, smacked of a deliberate design to diminish his tenure or reverse his achievements.
These developments, it emphasised, had placed the country in the spotlight. The former Chairman of the House Committee on Media and Publicity, Mr. Eziuche Ubani, who made the views of the House known at a news conference in Abuja, observed that Ribadu’s unceremonious removal as the EFCC boss and his recent demotion showed that President Umaru Yar’Adua’s administration was on a mission to pull him down.
Ubani, who said the leadership of the House mandated him to speak on the matter as the House was on its annual vacation, stated that the Federal Government was creating credibility problems for itself by granting audience to persons who were supposed to be on the wanted list of the EFCC, or seeking to offer political appointments to some of them.
He stated, “Whether we accept it or not, Ribadu has set some records in this country; on the international scene he is given high regard. Somehow, the whole of what is happening right now will smear the image of Nigeria before the rest of the world. Government should adopt the right strategy of making the EFCC work and not doing things that will create the wrong signals.”
Senators Ayogu Eze and Nuhu Aliyu had on Thursday exchanged hot words, as they took conflicting positions on the Ribadu matter, at a session with the Police Service Commission, the body that carried out the exercise. The Chairman of the PSC, Mr. Parry Osayande, a retired Deputy Inspector General of Police, had told the Senate committee that only the Vice-President had the powers to recall Ribadu from NIPSS.
On the 2009 budget, Ubani said the House expected the President to forward the estimates to it on September 9 when members would reconvene from their five-week break. He explained that the early submission of the estimates would allow the National Assembly to “scrutinise the details” and pass it by December.
On the anticipated reconstitution of the standing committees of the House, Ubani hinted that there would be no “drastic changes” at the level of committee leadership, adding “There will be realignment at the level of the bodies of the committees; some members will be moved from one committee to another. The changes being expected will not be drastic in terms of the leadership of the committees.”
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