UPDATED: NDUME INSTIGATES SENATE TO PROBE SARAKI, MELAYE

Akamanu Jennifer

The Senate, on Tuesday, gave nod to a motion, sponsored by the immediate-past Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, wherein he called on the Red Chamber to investigate the President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki and Dino Melaye.

Senator Ndume, who came under a motion of national importance, said Saraki, according to a story published by Sahara Reporters‎, sanctioned the summon of the Comptroller General of Nigerian Customs Service (NCS), over claims that his bullet proof Ranger Rover Sport was impounded.

In a press release later, Special Adviser to Senate President on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, stated that the allegation by Senator Ndume linking Saraki to the importation of vehicles lacks basis as it was outright falsehood.

Olaniyonu said from the facts and documents about the seized vehicle, it is obvious that the Senate President has nothing to do with the importation of any vehicle.

On the part of Melaye, Ndume said the same online platform, published a story that the Kogi State born Senator, did not obtain a degree in Geography from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

Ndume made references to four instances. He said former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Salisu Buhari was accused of certificate forgery and how he eventually cleared his name.

He said former Senate President, Adolphus Wabara was also accused when he held sway as Senate boss. According to Ndume, Wabara also cleared his name.

He said the current Governor of Katsina State, Aminu Bello Masari, as Speaker of the House of Representatives, was accused of certificate forgery, but went ahead and cleared his name.

His last reference was made to Dimeji Bankole, a former Speaker of the House of Representatives. He said he was accused of not writing his Senior Secondary School Examination. Again, Ndume said he cleared his name.

He said: “This matter borders on our privileges. One has to do with the Senator Bukola Saraki, the Senate President and it was reported in a paper I have it here. The newspaper said the Senate is on vengeance after Nigeria Customs seized Senator Saraki’s bullet proof Range Rover over fake documents.

“My colleagues that are following events, particularly online, have seen or heard or read the rein of abuses on this Senate and the misconception of the fact that we invited the Customs boss based on a very unpopular policy that affects the people we represent, but now we are faced with this.

“During the 4th Assembly, Salisu Buhari was accused of certificate forgery. He was investigated and determined after that. In the 5th Assembly, Bello Masari was accused of certificate forgery (secondary school). He was investigated and was cleared.

“In the 6th Senate, Dimeji Bankole was accused of not having NYSC certificate, it was investigated and he showed his NYSC certificate.

“Now, that brings me to the second matter in the National Assembly. In the 4th Assembly, Senate President, Adolphus Wabara was accused of collecting a bribe and it was investigated and determined. So, a lot of precedence has been set.

“Now, the second matter of privileges affects my colleague Dino Melaye and it is in the paper today.‎ Therefore, accordingly, I will appeal we refer the matter to Ethics and Privileges to investigate so that our colleagues would be cleared and this senate will stand as it supposed to.”

Senator Melaye, in a press conference after plenary, told Senate Correspondents that he will submit himself to the Ethics committee for proper investigation.

Melaye is a member of the committee and has promised to recuse himself throughout the duration of the exercise. He however claimed that the outcome of the investigation will exonerate him.

“I have nothing to hide. I have seven degrees and I am currently running another programme. I have my certificates and I will make everything available to the committee during the investigation,” Melaye told newsmen.

With the nod of Ekweremadu, Ndume submitted some newspaper publications, after which the matter was referred to the Senate committee on Ethics, Privileges and Public Petitions for further investigation.

 

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