Dogara: Padding is no crime i won't resign - EazyFeeds

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Saturday 6 August 2016

Dogara: Padding is no crime i won't resign

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, on Friday said he had no reason to resign from office following allegation of "padding" the 2016 national budget levelled against him by former chairman of the House Committee on Appropriation, Abdulmumuni Jibrin.

Dogara spoke to State House correspondents as he emerged from a closed-door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House, Abuja.

The Speaker said that as a lawyer and lawmaker, he was not aware of anything like padding being a crime.

He also shrugged of any apprehension over the allegations which tends to be dividing the House of Representatives that is currently on recess.

His chat with the journalists went thus:

Q: What informed your visit on a Friday?

"I can't come and see my President? Do I need any reason to come and see my President? It's a private visit.

Q: Was the issue of alleged budget padding discussed?

What is budget padding?

Q: The language emanated from your chambers...

I don't know, educate me. I am a lawyer and the Speaker and I have never heard of the word padding. What does padding mean?

Q: Your former chairman of Appropriation Committee is saying you padded the budget...

Ask him; he who alleges must prove. That is the law in Nigeria.

Q: Are you not going to defend yourself?

Am I before a court?

Q: There are people saying you should reconvene the House before September resumption time and step aside for thorough investigations?

We have rules and regulations; this is not a mock institution. We operate by rules and we will follow the rules.

Q: Will you resign?

Resign for what?

Q: Over this allegation.

What is the allegation?

Q: That you and some members of the leadership padded the budget.

What is padding? You haven't told me. Ask Jibrin what is padding? For me, I studied law and I have been in the legislature and all this period I have never heard of the word padding being   an offence under any law. If I don't know, you are the media, research the law and let me know.

Q: Are you worried?

Worried for what, worried over nothing? Why should I be worried? As far as I am concerned I am not worried over anything.

Q: Will there be sanctions for Jibrin?

I am not the chairman of Ethics Committee of the House, so I wouldn't know and I don't know what padding means.

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