The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria condemns the plot by some members of the senate to amend the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act to their own advantage. By this they would now take over the controlling powers of the bureau and the tribunal from the President, to shield themselves from prosecution when they engage in acts of misconduct.
The mission and vision of the 8th National Assembly is becoming clearer by the day, as they have abandoned pressing issues for parochial and self-serving ones. It is our belief that if the people in authority do the right thing there would be no need trying to circumvent statutory laws and acts. For us at congress, allowing the President to maintain his power of appointment into the CCB only is not enough if the war against corruption must be won.
In the last one and half years the lawmakers have given the country cause to worry, to say the least. They are paid humongous wages and allowances with the tax payers’ money for doing nothing, even at a time the wages of an average worker can barely take him or her home. The act that regulates the activities of CCB is not meant for a specific individual. It will outlive the 8th Assembly. The act is not about them but about ensuring that people in authority become responsible.
We salute the courage of the appeal court on its declaration on the case involving the senate president Dr. Olusola Saraki, on charges of false assets declaration brought against him by the federal government. We are aware of certain moves by some senators to frustrate the effort of the federal government as far as the corruption fight is concerned. If it were in some Asian countries people who support such moves by now will be in jail or, probably awaiting execution.
It will be recalled that a similar amendment bill was introduced in the Senate earlier in the year, which generated political tension that forced the lawmakers to suspend the process. Raising this issue again shows the lawmakers are insensitive, greedy and appear not to give a damn. We wonder how seeking to amend the Code of Conduct Bureau and Tribunal Act Cap. C15 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2014, that takes cares of the entry age of the chairman and members of the bureau will put food on the tables of the masses that will warrant our “hallowed” senate giving it such attention. Their motive is wrong and we would mobilise to checkmate every enemy of our nascent democracy.
The congress warns that everyone irrespective of status is not greater than the over 170 million Nigerians. We are all equal before the law. Sadly, out of this population over 85 percent are poor. It is our opinion that there should be no more silly games and hiding behind frivolous appeals to misappropriate our commonwealth.
We urge the federal government, CCT and other agencies of government to investigate treasury looters, irrespective of party affiliation and bring all those who have acquired properties all over the world with our money to book. Follow all corruption cases to logical conclusions and give Nigerians justice. For Nigeria to be great again, for Nigeria to succeed, corruption must be addressed squarely.
Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama
Comrade (Barr.) Simeso Amachree
Ag. Secretary General, TUC
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