FROM MICHAEL JEGEDE, ABUJA
A chieftain of All Progressives Congress (APC) from Kogi State, Senator Nurudeen Abatemi-Usman, has condemned in strong terms the action of some lawmakers, who intermittently interrupted and booed President Muhammadu Buhari, during the presentation of the 2019 budget to a joint session of the National Assembly.
The lawmakers, believed to be members of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), jeered at Buhari as he tried to explain the various achievements of his government, while presenting the 2019 Appropriation Bill before the National Assembly. The lawmakers’ action threw the parliament into a rowdy session.
Describing the action of the legislators as unfortunate and demeaning, Abatemi-Usman, who represented Kogi Central Senatorial District in the seventh Senate, wondered why Distinguished Senators and Honourable Members, would stoop so low as to act in a manner, that was quite indecent of their status as parliamentarians.
The former Kogi Senator said in an interview that “the booing of President Muhammadu Buhari by some members of the National Assembly while he was presenting the 2019 budget is completely uncalled-for and highly condemnable. It is beneath the dignity of NASS members. It is dishonorable and unbecoming of the position they occupy as lawmakers. No right-thinking Nigerian would clap for the legislators for acting in such an unruly manner during an important session as budget presentation by the President.”
The erstwhile Vice Chairman Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs, however, blamed the brashness and impudence of the lawmakers on the current leadership of the National Assembly, declaring that such could not have happened under the former Senate President, Senator David Mark.
He said: “What we are seeing today in the National Assembly clearly says something about this present leadership of NASS. Certainly under David Mark, this show of shame, display of ill-manners and indecorum could never have happened. It is obviously a reflection of the kind of leadership we now have in the Federal Legislature.”
Abatemi-Usman described as preposterous the view of some that the action of the NASS members was an indication of Buhari’s rejection for 2019, insisting that the President remains as popular as he was with the masses before his assumption of office in 2015. The ex-lawmaker expressed confidence that Buhari will record an overwhelming victory in the 2019 presidential polls.
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