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Calls for Jonathan’s impeachment ‘utter rubbish’- Senate

18 December 2013, 14:05

Abuja - The Senate has dismissed the call by the All Progressives Congress (APC) that the National Assembly should begin impeachment proceedings against President Goodluck Jonathan.

Addressing journalists on Tuesday in Abuja, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Media, Information and Public Affairs, Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP-Abia), said the call was “utter rubbish”.

Abaribe made the statement after the plenary session which was preceded by an executive session.

The senate spokesperson said during the executive session, the senators discussed matters of urgent national importance.

On the status of the 2014 budget, Abaribe said that the Conference Committee of the Senate and the House of Representatives met on Tuesday to resolve the matter.

A reliable source later told the News Agency of Nigeria that the committee had agreed on a 77.5 dollars benchmark.

The senate spokesperson had earlier said that when the matter was resolved, the National Assembly would be open to receiving the budget from the president at anytime.

He said that depending on the situation on the ground, the senate could reconvene even if it was on recess.

“The senate has the Rule 1(b) which is part of our rules and it says we have options at all times to regulate our procedure.

“So, depending on the situation on ground, the senate, if need be, will sit even on a Sunday.

“Of course, resolution of the matter also means the country will be in a position to receive the budget from Mr. President, this is what I can confirm.”

He said that the Senate would on Wednesday receive a briefing from the security chiefs in a close session.

“The senate will tomorrow host, in a close session, the leadership of the country’s armed forces for an interaction with regards to the security situation that the country is facing.

“After our interaction, if there’s need or if there’s something that we have to let you (newsmen) know, I will also let you know tomorrow after the interaction with the security chiefs.”

He said that the national assembly would continue to support the armed forces to be sure that the security of every Nigerian was guaranteed.

Reacting to the statement made by the INEC Chairman, Attahiru Jega, that elections might not hold in states under emergency rule, Abaribe said there was no need for speculations.

“I will not go into the realm of speculations. But I can say that the state of emergency is for every six months and then it will be reviewed.

“I believe that before any election will hold, that six months for a state of emergency would have elapsed and then we will also look at what the position is.

“So I don’t think that it will be right, at this time, to speculate on what is going to come forth in a year’s time because we know and we assume that things must have stabilised by that time.”

He said part of the briefing that the senate would get from the service chiefs would also include knowing what the security situation was in all parts of the country.



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