Teddy Nwanunobi, Abuja
The National Assembly Complex on Tuesday was besieged by scores of protesters, who demanded for the immediate suspension of the Senate President, Senator Abubakar Bukola Saraki, among other things.
Known as the Open Society Coalition (OSC), the protesters, who thronged in front of the main entrance to the National Assembly, brandished banners and placards with various inscriptions on them.
Some of the messages on the banners and placards read: “Suspend Saraki, not Marafa”; “Stop suspending members, leave the Senate and face CCT”; “Democracy survives in inclusiveness, not in suspending people of different opinions”; and “National Assembly, centre of democracy, fascist centre”.
The UNION reports that Saraki is currently facing trial before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) over alleged falsification of assets declaration.
As a result, the OSC demanded for the immediate resignation of Saraki so that he would be able to focus more on his trial at the CCT.
The presence of the protesters must have acted as a clog in the planned suspension of Senator Kabiru Marafa over his alleged unguided statements against Saraki by the Red Chamber.
It would be recalled that the Senate had, upon receipt of an oral petition under Order 14 by the duo of Senator Haman Isa Misau and Senator Mathew Urhogide last week Tuesday, mandated its Committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions to investigate Marafa on alleged disparaging remarks he made against the Senate and National Assembly in an interview he granted to a national daily, and report back to at Tuesday’s plenary.
Marafa had, in another explosive interview he granted to some national dailies on Monday, boasted of coming to face the Committee with additional information on other dirty deals of the 8th Senate that were not contained in his earlier interview publications.
However, while Marafa was absent at the Committee’s sitting on Monday, the Committee insisted that it would submit its report on the floor of the Senate-in-Plenary on Tuesday, with high possibility of recommending his suspension based on evidential submissions made against him by Urhogide, who served as the chief petitioner in the absence of Misau.
Protesters Besiege NASS, Demand Saraki’s Suspension
Teddy Nwanunobi, Abuja