The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Aminu Tambuwal, Tuesday, drove himself to the National Assembly Complex without the prolific security detail he’d always enjoyed since his emergence as Speaker.
Mr. Tambuwal, donned in white agbada and a matching cap, drove into the National Assembly at about 10:50 a.m. in a sport-utility vehicle, SUV, and was immediately shielded by ecstatic All Progressives Congress lawmakers. Sources said he was at the complex to commence two hearings scheduled for 11 a.m. and 12 p.m.
At one of the hearings, jointly organised by House Committee on Public Account and House Committee on Justice, the Speaker implored financial professionals to support the lawmakers’ effort to repeal the Audit Act of 1956 so as to eliminate corruption and significantly advance the nation’s financial system.
He also said that the country must align itself with the digital auditing, which had long been the trend in advanced climes. He said the extant Audit Act deprives the Accountant-General of the Federation the necessary instrument to fight corruption. He said this will be eliminated by a new Audit Service Commission which will be created after the passage of the new bill.
The then Acting Inspector-General of Police, Suleiman Abba, had, last week, ordered withdrawal of the Speaker’s security details following his much-anticipated announcement during a House plenary, on October 29, in which he declared his intention to cross carpet to the APC.
The APC is a minority party in both legislative chambers, but the action of Mr. Abba, and the constitutionality thereof, has been out into extensive debate by Nigerians. Some have hailed the decision as a courageous step while many dismissed it as a partisan and illegal action taken by the police to harass the president’s political adversaries.
Mr. Tambuwal immediately dragged the police to an Abuja High Court where a judge granted him a temporary relief, Monday, that the status quo must be maintained pending determination of the substantive suit.
Hearing on the substantive suit commences this Friday.
By Ogundipe, Samuel O.