The Guardian is reporting that the leadership of the two houses of the national assembly have resolved to dedicate the second session of the assembly which ends in June 2017 to checking waste, corruption and abuse from the executive arm and MDAs. This is with a view to ensuring that the economy gets back on track.
Starting this week, the lawmakers intend to unveil a series of legislative packages towards achieving that.
Nigerians would find the suggestion that the national assembly will suddenly become a champion of transparency and efficiency very laughable. Members of the two chambers of the national assembly have fought tirelessly to shield how much they earn and take as perks, despite repeated promises made by their leadership. The role of the national assembly in the recent budget controversy is also a pointer that any real fight against corruption by lawmakers needs to start from within.
According to the paper:
It was learnt that shortly before resumption of the two chambers of the National Assembly from their eight-week recess, key principal officers rose from a meeting in Abuja and resolved that to revive the economy, there was need to use their legislative powers to direct attention to priority areas.
The lawmakers, upon resumption, bought into the resolution because of series of reports about abuse in Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs).
According to sources close to the leadership of the Senate and House of Representatives, sectors that would attract the searchlight include oil and gas, communication, transportation, marine, and aviation. Others include health, agriculture, education and security.
The lawmakers will also embark on special investigation to find out how the 2016 budget has been implemented.
“We made huge provisions in the 2016 budget to take care of projects in the health, education and many other sectors. We are going to allow Nigerians to know through our oversight functions. Yes, we are in a recession but some money has come in through regular revenue sources, which ought to have been utilised for some of these projects. We will also let Nigerians know what happened to looted money, said to have been recovered. This is certainly going to be a very busy session for us in the National Assembly,” a lawmaker hinted
The Guardian also found out that the two Houses have already scheduled motions on problematic areas of the economy in their Notice Order Papers for debate.
The Senate has scheduled for debate, a motion seeking to investigate the deteriorating state of affairs in the aviation sector.
Sponsored by Senator Samuel Anyanwu (PDP, Imo East), the motion, which will be debated Tuesday, urged the Federal Government to intervene in the downturn affecting airline operators, with a view to granting them bailouts.
It also urged the Senate to mandate the Federal Ministry of Transport to commence rehabilitation of major highways and the rail system to serve as alternative to air transport.