…as Dogara refers matter to Committee on Rules, Business
By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA-Again, the House of Representatives on Thursday witnessed another stormy session over President Muhammadu Buhari’s $496 million request for the purchase of Super Tucano aircraft from the United States government. Super Tucano It will be recalled that the president had made advanced payment on the aircraft from monies not appropriated for by the National Assembly. A letter from the president announcing the development had caused an uproar in the House on Tuesday when the Speaker, Hon. Yakubu Dogara read it. Members had vexed that the president would unilaterally expend funds not legislated. But the speaker saved the day, saying that the members would have another chance to make inputs when the matter is formally enlisted on the Order Paper for Second Reading. On Thursday when the matter came up, the members also flared up yet again on the matter, asking the House to “throw it” away. Relying on Section 80 of the 1999 Constitution, the House said that it was an illegality, saying that the President had breached all known legislative norms and conventions. Members took turns to aggressively bare their minds on the issue, condemning the presidential action. But ruling on the matter after aggregating the views, the Speaker referred it to the House Committee on Rules and Business to dust the archives of the House for possible precedent on the matter.