OrderPaperToday – The House of Representatives has kicked against a plan by the Muhammadu Buhari government to disburse $322 million Abacha loot sent by the Swiss government to vulnerable households in 19 States.
The green chamber further resolved to constitute an adhoc committee to trace all the Abacha loot so far sent to the country from 1998 till date and determine how it was utilized.
These resolutions were sequel to a motion raised by Mr. Karimi Sunday (PDP, Kogi) during plenary on Wednesday.
Raising the motion, Mr. Sunday frowned at the alleged decision to disburse the money to vulnerable in 19 states of the federation, stressing that the 1999 constitution empowers the legislature to determine how public money should be utilized.
According to him, it is not for the Swiss government and the Executive arm to decide for Nigeria on how the funds should be used.
Speaking in favour of the motion, Mr. Hassan Saleh (APC, Benue) said the money should rather be used to revive the Ajaokuta Steel which will generate millions of jobs for Nigerians.
The debate continued as members like Mr. Nkem Abonta (PDP, Abia), Mr. Nicholas Ossai (PDP, Delta) separately noted that the use of such money to feed the poor goes contrary to the Parliament’s power of appropriation.
“The National Assembly should wake up and come up with a program that will decide how the Abacha loot be spent”, Mr. Ossai said.
Following further debate, the Speaker, Yakubu Dogara put up a voice vote on the matter and the ‘ayes’ had it.
The adhoc committee is expected to report its findings to the House within six weeks for further legislative action.