The Nigerian Senate has expressed grave concern over an imminent threat to Nigeria’s democracy following the refusal of the executive arm of government to answer to legislative summons. Chairman of Senate Committee on Media and Public Affairs Senator Sabi Abdullahi made this worrying observation on Wednesday, March 22 just after another appointee of President Muhammadu Buhari said he would not answer the summon to appear before the upper house of legislature.Although Abdullahi said he was unaware of the letter written to Senate by secretary to the Government of the federation David Babachir Lawal at the time of the chat, he however noted that the trend of public officials refusing to answer legislative summons was becoming a threat to Nigeria’s democracy.
Abdullahi said:“I am not aware of that. But we are waiting to see what happens. That is exactly what we are saying; that if this continues to happen, then, bye bye to democracy. It means I can even go to court to stop you (our correspondent) from doing your work.
“We will see how that will continue to play out and I think this is the end of democracy in Nigeria if that continues to play out. We are performing our constitutional mandate and if anybody is going to court to stop us, then, what it means is that we should all go to court and stop the entire government from working.”
The Senate on Wednesday, March 22, declared Nigeria Customs Service boss Col. Hameed Ali (rtd.) unfit to hold a public office and ultimately demanded his resignation as Customs boss.
The senate resolved that Ali should resign his post after he again failed to appear before the lawmakers as directed by the upper house of legislature on Thursday, March 16. Senators argued on Wednesday that Ali’s refusal to show up because of the letter the clerk of the Senate received from the office of the attorney-general of federation Abubakar Malami directing the lawmakers to leave him alone because the matter was in court amounted to interference in its duties.