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Budget Padding Scandal: Gbajabiamila Offers Self For Probe

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Femi-GbajabiamilaAs allegations of budget padding continue to rock the House of Representatives, its Majority Leader, Femi Gbajabiamila, has offered himself up for investigation by security and anti-corruption agencies.

A former Chairman of the House Committee on Appropriation, Abdulmumin Jibrin had alleged that Speaker Yakubu Dogara, Deputy Speaker Yussuf Lasun, Whip Alhassan Doguwa and Minority Leader Leo Ogor, illegally padded the 2016 budget to the tune of about N40b.

Jibrin also accused nine Committee Chairmen of inserting 2,000 fictitious projects worth N284billion into the budget. All the persons accused have denied any wrongdoing.

Rising from a meeting late Thursday, 10 Principal Officers of the House, including the Majority Leader, issued a statement declaring support for the Speaker and accusing the sacked appropriation committee chair of making wild, baseless and unfounded allegations.

Going a step further, Hon. Gbajabiamila, in a statement Friday, noted that though his name was not mentioned by Jibrin of padding the budget since the controversy began, there was a need for him to clear his name.

He also displayed a commendable spirit of sportsmanship by re-affirming the innocence of the entire body of Principal Officers of the House on the budget padding scandal.

SEE ALSO: Gbajabiamila, Others Back Dogara, Accuse Jibrin Of Making Wild Accusations

It would be recalled that the member representing Surulere 1 Federal Constituency of Lagos State on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, contested the Speakership position with Dogara, losing by a very narrow margin.

His statement read: “I returned from the United States just yesterday after a three-week break. I called the Speaker a day before my return to urgently fix a Principal Officers meeting so we could address the several allegations made by Hon Jibrin.

“At the meeting, Speaker Dogara, Deputy Speaker Lasun, Chief Whip, Hon Ado Doguwa and Minority Leader, Hon Leo Ogor passionately and vigorously clearly stated their innocence.

“A prepared text was read and we all agreed to sign. For me as the Leader of the House, I felt it was important to give them the benefit of doubt which in any case is what our constitution says.

“The decision to relieve Hon Jibrin was indeed a collective decision of which I was a part of.

“However, I gave a caveat before the press release was signed, I made it clear to my colleagues in the leadership that because somehow my name had been sullied in all of this and fake documents and publications had been put out there in traditional and social media, which stated I was also involved in the so-called padding of the budget, that I would need to clear my name and that even though no petition was filed against me by Hon Jibrin and no invitation was extended to me by the police, I would be submitting myself on my own volition to the police for investigation.

“This is important to me as insinuations have been made from many quarters that I along with others were sponsoring Hon Jibrin. I have just this afternoon met with the police authorities for a proper and thorough investigation of my role if any in this whole bizarre episode”.

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BREAKING: Senator Abbo Dumps PDP; Joins APC

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BREAKING: Senator Abbo Dumps PDP; Joins APC

Elisha Abbo

Senator Elisha Abbo has defected from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), Nigeria’s ruling party.

Senator Abbo, who represents Adamawa North in the Nigerian Senate announced his defection from the PDP to the APC in a letter addressed to the Senate.

Senator Ahmad Lawan, the President of the Nigerian Senate, read the letter during Wednesday’s plenary session.

Also Read: 2023 Presidency: Bode George Cautions Buhari About Tinubu

In his letter, Senator Abbo explained that his decision to defect to the APC is because of the mismanagement of the PDP in Adamawa state by Governor Umaru Fintiri.

Senator Abbo who is a first-term lawmaker was elected in 2019 to the Senate on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Meanwhile, the name Senator Elisha Abbo became popular amongst Nigerians last year after he made headlines for slapping an attendant in a sex toy shop for ‘disrespecting’ him.

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2023 Presidency: Bode George Cautions Buhari About Tinubu

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2023 Presidency: Bode George Cautions Buhari About Tinubu

Bode George, Tinubu

Chief Bode George, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party has warned President Muhammadu Buhari against supporting Bola Tinubu, National Leader of the All Progressives Congress for the 2023 Presidency.

Bode George made this remark in a statement titled, “The jamboree visit to the Villa: My Birthday Offering.”

The former National Port Authority boss warned Buhari against falling to the antics of those who would ignore the issues of Lagos State to engage in a needless scheming in partisan engagement.

Bode-George also condemned the recent visit of some APC chieftains, Chief Bisi Akande, Prince Tajudeen Olusi, Dr Yomi Finnih, and Chief Segun Osoba to the State House, Abuja.

Also Read: Fashola: If We Keep Our Promises, APC Will Retain Power In 2023

The PDP chieftain said: “The visit of Chief Bisi Akande, Prince Tajudeen Olusi, Dr Yomi Finnih, and Chief Segun Osoba to the seat of power in Abuja is needless, unnecessary, veiled in some poorly hidden agenda that is woven in apparently self-serving ulterior personalised desperation.

“It is easy to discern that the visit is stripped of any patriotic progression, lacking in balanced national leadership, voided of a spirit of sacrifice and developmental vision. The very absence of Bola Tinubu from the jamboree screams to high heavens that the meeting itself is a covert placatory softening of the ground for Tinubu himself. I am pretty certain that in his very absence, Tinubu occupies the centrality of the discussion.

“I will advise Baba Akande who governed Osun State with principled, incorruptible leadership to kindly help us drop off Bola Tinubu at Iragbiji as he makes his way back to Ila-Orangun, rather than engaging in fruitless pleading sessions for a man who is fixated on a warped pipe-dream about governing Nigeria. He should pay restitution for the egregious stripping of the Lagosian coffers.”

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Umahi Sacks Tertiary Institution’s Boards Headed By Ex-Minister, Ambassador

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Umahi Sacks Tertiary Institution’s Boards Headed By Ex-Minister, Ambassador

Dave Umahi

Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi who recently defected to the All Progressives Congress, on Tuesday sacked sixteen Technical Assistants.

The development was disclosed in a statement released by Umahi through the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Kenneth Ugbala.

He also announced the dissolution of governing boards of the state’s two tertiary education institutions.

Also Read: Gov. Umahi Sacks Political Appointees From Ohaukwu LGA

The boards dissolved are the Ebonyi State University Governing Council and the Ebonyi State College of Education, Ikwo Governing Boards.

The two boards are headed by Ambassador Franklin Ogbuewu and a former Minister of State for Health, Fidelis Nwankwo.

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