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Senate Sued Over N5.5bn Car Budget



The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and some other civil society organisations in the country have dragged the Senate before the Federal High Court in Lagos seeking an injunction restraining National Assembly Service Commission from spending N5.550 billion to buy cars for the lawmakers.

In the suit filed by SERAP, BudgIT, Enough is Enough (EiE) and 6,721 concerned Nigerians, the plaintiffs want the court to stop the Senate from collecting the money until the downward review of the amount proposed by the Senate.

The 6,721 concerned Nigerians who joined the suit as co-plaintiffs with SERAP, BudgIT and EiE include: Bring Back Our Girls (BBOG) co-conveners, Oby Ezekwesili and Aisha Yesufu; Jibrin Ibrahim; Edetaen Ojo; Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, and Deji Adeyanju.

The plaintiffs, in a affidavit attached to the suit, argued that: “Spending a huge sum of N5.550 billion to buy luxury cars for principal members of the ninth Senate is unjust and unfair.”

They also averred that it negates the constitutional oath of office made by members to perform their functions in the interest of the well-being and prosperity of Nigeria and its citizens, as contained in the Seventh Schedule of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution (as amended).”

The plaintiffs also argued, “The proposed spending by the ninth Senate raises pertinent questions: What is the economic value and contribution of the vehicles sought to be purchased to the grand scheme of Nigeria’s economy?

“What are the parameters used to arrive at cost efficiency and value for money in the decision to purchase the vehicles?  Where are the vehicles purchased by the eighth Senate?

“The failure or refusal by the Senate to comply with legal and constitutional provisions is nothing but an act of arbitrariness.