James Emejo in Abuja
The House of Representatives has finally pardoned the former Chairman of the House Committee on Appropriation, Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin, who was suspended for 180 legislative days over the budget padding controversy which rocked the lower chamber in 2016.
The Speaker of the House, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, yesterday said Jibrin can now resume at the chamber, having satisfied all the conditions set out for his re-admission into the House.
One of the key conditions was that he should tender a written apology to the House.
Jibrin had severally indicated that he would not apologise.
However, Dogara who held a letter of apology purportedly written by the embattled lawmakerÂ but which he didnâ€™t read out, said he is now free to return to the chambers- after meeting all the demands.
Yet, his actual date of resumption had been another controversy.
Last year, Jibrin had chided the spokesman of the House, Hon. Abdulrazaq Namdas, over the latterâ€™s comments on his expected date of return from his suspension.
The embattled lawmaker was reportedly angered by Namdasâ€™ comment that he was yet to complete his suspension and that he would have to apologise to the lower chamber as a condition for his return to the chamber.
In a statement issued by his media aide, Godwin Onyeacholem, the lawmaker berated Namdas for making comments which are â€œinsensitive and insulting to the people of his constituency, coming on a day Kiru/Bebeji constituents gathered to further deepen their protests and mark a one year of brazen impunity and injustice meted on them and the member representing them (who it is a public knowledge committed no offence).â€
Nevertheless, the Speaker said Jibrin can now return â€œunless there are new developments.â€
By implication, he is not expected to make disparaging comments capable of further escalating the existing tension between him and the House.