Many Questions About NASS N37bn Request
ElevateNews takes a look at the N37 billion request by the NASS to renovate the complex.
With N37 billion, 37 primary health centres can be built in every remotest part of the 36 States, including the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
This is according to a paediatrician, Dr. Ayo Omosehindemi. This would have brought health services to rural communities and eventually reduced child and maternal mortality.
This is the exact funds that the Nigeria legislative arm has requested to renovate the National Assembly Complex.
Twenty years ago, this complex was built at the cost of about N10 billion but today the lawmakers are demanding N37 billion to renovate it.
The lawmakers could only approve N10 billion for the Federal Road Maintenance Agency, FERMA to maintain the roads across the country.
A year ago, residents of Makogi community, a developing town in Ogun State rolled out drums to celebrate a three-block of the classroom built by the former Governor of the State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
According to a Quantity Surveyor, Mr. Abidemi Okunola, the building would have cost the government less than N2 million, judging by the standard of the classroom.
The government failed to provide seats and desks for the pupils, except these walls.
Okunola said that with the N37 billion the Federal lawmakers are requesting for, quality classrooms would have been built across the country.
If these lawmakers are patriotic and not for self-service, N1 billion to each of the Federal University in the country would have solved big problems of research grants for many of our professors.
But the thinking of the lawmakers is about how to enrich themselves not how to build a better country.
The lawmakers are self-serving and have shown that nothing has changed since democracy returns to Nigeria in 1999.
The Senate will be ready to approve any document whatsoever as long as the executive is ready to play the game. Now that the secret of budget padding has been exposed, the lawmakers will always seek new ways to augment their already heavy earnings.
The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan is like a rubber waiting to stamp any document from the executive but with a condition that the executive will also approve the Senate request.
However, the fact that the leadership of NASS is rubber stamp does not mean that the legislature will not have any row with the executive arm of the government in the future.
If President Muhammadu Buhari is sincere with his fight against corruption, this is the kind of battle I recommend for him.
The president should be bold enough to stop this recklessness of the legislature without which the teeming members of the public and the media will rubbish his anti-corruption crusade.
Though the president once lamented about the deceits about the constituency projects by the legislators, saying that there is nothing to show that these lawmakers are doing anything to develop their constituency, yet a lot of funds are earmarked for this every year.
The bicameral legislature in Nigeria is a waste as it encourages corruption. It is expensive and gives room to leakages.