National Assembly invites President Buhari over recession

By Edwin Akwueh, Abuja

The Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari.

Nigeria’s National Assembly has invited President Muhammadu Buhari to address a Joint Session of the lawmakers on the steps being taken to end the current economic recession.

The Senate on Wednesday decided to concur with the House of Representatives’ resolution, sequel to a motion by the Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Bala Na’Allah, in which he drew the attention of the Chamber to the resolution of the House.

Moving the motion, Senator Na’Allah said; “the Senate concurs with the House of Representatives’ resolution passed on Thursday, September 22, 2016 to invite the President, Commander-in-chief, to address a joint session of the National Assembly, to intimate it with plans to get the country out of recession to enable the House take further legislative action.”

No opposition
Thereafter, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, put the issue to a voice vote and all the Senators present unanimously passed it without a single opposition.

The House of Representatives had urged the President to hold an emergency joint session with the National Assembly with a view to formally presenting the legislature and by extension, the entire Nigerians with information on the true state of the economy, in the face of the painful economic circumstances.

Addressing the House in plenary, prior to the resolution, the Speaker of the House, Yakubu Dogara had said that if Buhari appeared before the joint session of the National Assembly, it would provide the entire government structures the opportunity to have equal knowledge and perception about the state of the economy and simultaneously provide them with the synergy to resolve the crisis.

According to Mr. Dogara, “the recent retreat by Mr. President with his cabinet and sundry statutory appointees is most commendable.’’

“It is in this regard, that I urge Mr President to consider holding a joint emergency session of the National Assembly to brief both the Legislature and indeed Nigerians of his plans to pull Nigeria out of recession…This will provide the opportunity for all stakeholders to be on the same page and to act in concert for urgent national recovery. It will also further consolidate the ongoing consultations between the Presidency and the National Assembly on the way forward. We must never miss the opportunity the present travails offer us to launch Nigeria into its rightful destiny and place among the comity of prosperous nations,’’ he stressed.

“As representatives of the people, we are well acquainted with the alarming state of the citizens’ penury. We will therefore, collaborate with the Executive in fine-tuning any observed limitations in policy formulation and implementation to ensure speedy delivery of services to our people,’’ the Speaker added.

Mercy Chukwudiebere