The former chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Hon Abdulmumin Jibrin, yesterday started up a fresh controversy over the 2018 appropriation bill passed last week by the National Assembly.
The lawmaker, who represents Kiru/Bebeji federal constituency of Kano State, suggested that the budget was ridden with fraudulent insertions, popularly referred to as bugdet padding.
Jibrin, in a post via his Twitter handle @AbdulAbmJ, hinted that nothing had changed in the country’s appropriation system since he raised the alarm over alleged budget padding in 2016.
He, however, offered to share his thoughts on the 2018 budget in subsequent tweets.
“I resumed work in good time to catch up with budget 2018. Has anything changed in our appropriation process and the budget itself since 2016? Within the week, I will be sharing my perspectives and discussing some details of the budget. I will gladly answer your questions as well,” the tweet reads.
LEADERSHIP recalls that Jibrin recently returned to his legislative duties following his suspension by the House for making the budget padding allegations against the House of Representatives leadership in 2016
It was gathered that on resumption, he raised eyebrows about some items infused in the budget during an executive session of the House shortly before the budget was passed last Wednesday.
“You know he was former chairman of the appropriation committee, so he knows the nitty-gritty; he knows how and where budgets can be padded . But the Speaker didn’t allow him to press further with his allegations,” a source close to the lower chamber said.
According to the source, Jibrin’s anger was fuelled because of the meagre budgetary allocation to his constituency in the 2018 budget.
“I also think he is angry because of the small financial value of the projects allocated to his constituency. Even first term lawmakers attracted bigger projects to their constituencies,” he stated.
Jibrin, who has been silent since he returned to the House, did not respond to inquiries on the fresh development. This could be due to his agreement with the leadership of the House not to speak to the media on matters relating to the Green Chamber.
The House had in March lifted the suspension imposed on Jibrin following the alarm he raised on the alleged padding of the 2016 budget. The lawmaker was suspended for over 180 legislative days from the chambers. The House had demanded an apology from Jibrin but he vowed never to do so.
However, Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara, in March displayed a letter of apology which Jibrin reportedly wrote to the House, adding that the lawmaker was free to resume his duties unless there are new developments.
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