Damilola Oyedele in Abuja
Senator Dino Melaye (Kogi APC) has called on the Senate to override President Muhammadu Buhariâ€™s decision to decline assent to the Peace Corp Establishment Bill.
He, however, called on the Senate to first write a formal letter to the president to urge him to change his position.
Melaye while citing a matter of personal explanation at the plenary wednesday, said the establishment of the outfit would provide employment for hundreds of thousands of unemployed youths.
It would also contribute to enhance the security infrastructure in Nigeria, he said.
Melaye told the senators that he has been inundated with calls from hundreds of his constituents who disagree with the position of the president.
â€œThey want the president to withdraw his non-assent to the Bill,â€ Melaye said.
He recalled that the establishment of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence
Corps (NSCDC) was also resisted on grounds that there was no money, but the outfit has now become an important of Nigeriaâ€™s security infrastructure.
The corps has become very useful particularly in protection of pipelines, Melaye added.
â€œAbout $5.5 billion was borrowed through Eurobonds. No part of this will be used to uplift the youths. About $1 billion will be spent on security. How does that affect the youths of this country?â€
â€œThe PDP in 16 years borrowed N6 trillion. This government in three years, has borrowed N11 trillion. There is no specific programme for the youths of this country,â€ he added.
Melaye noted further that no impact has been felt for the N500 billion earmarked for social investments.
â€œIf the Peace Corps is allowed to exist, hundreds of youths will be employed. It will fight unemployment in this country. We are calling that the Senate will revisit this matter.
â€œWe may need to write the President to review his position. If not, we have the power on behalf of Nigerian youths to override the veto of Mr. President so that the people will become the beneficiaries of this Peace Corps. The youths of this country must be given priority,â€ Melaye said.
The issue was not subjected to any debate as a matter of personal explanation.