As the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions set to drill the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Lamorde, today (Tuesday), the Senate has denied any report of purported division in the Upper Chamber. This is even as the Senate has, again, described as baseless and unfounded allegations that the invitation Lamorde by Committee is masterminded by the Senate President, Senator Abubakar Bukola Saraki.
Interim Chairman, Senate Ad hoc Committee on Media and Publicity, Senator Dino Melaye, in a statement on behalf of the Senate made available to reporters in Abuja yesterday, said that the allegations were the handiwork of enemies of the 8th Senate.
“The attention of the Senate Ad hoc Committee on Media and Publicity has been drawn to media reports to the extent that the Senate is allegedly divided over the invitation of the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Lamorde, by the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions. “This office wishes to state categorically that the allegation is false and that it could only have emanated from the imagination of those, who do not want the 8th Senate to succeed.
“The Committee also wishes to state that the Senate will not be blackmailed into abandoning its constitutional mandate, which includes, but not limited to investigating any issue brought before it,” he stated. Melaye further supported the action of the Committee, as backed by the Constitution.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Order 103 of the Senate Standing Orders specifically states that: ‘In the exercise of the powers conferred on the National Assembly by sections 88 and 89 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Senate shall have power to direct or cause to be directed an investigation into any matter.’
“We wish to equally state that attempts to undermine the Senate’s summon on the basis that the petition in question was sent through a senator rather to the Senate is rather begging the question as petitions to the Senate can either be sent to the Senate President directly or through individual Senators for onward presentation to the Senate.
-Teddy Nwanunobi, Abuja