- Insists executive not muzzling legislature
Senior Special Adviser to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Sen. Ita Enang, has said President Muhammadu Buhariâ€™s government is the most transparent so far.
Enang further urged Nigerians to feel free to approach government functionaries on activities of government they were not clear about, rather than forming wrong opinions about governmentâ€™s intentions.
While speaking with lawyers from Akwa Ibom, under the auspices of Akwa Ibom Lawyers Forum, who visited him in Abuja yesterday, the presidentâ€™s aide said, â€œPresident Buhariâ€™s government is the most transparent in Nigeria and he has put in all he can to serve the nation.
â€œThe president and all of us working with him are the servants of the people and we are always ready to attend to concerns by Nigerians about the running of government.
â€œNigerians should feel free to ask questions on what they do not understand rather than assuming and forming wrong opinions about workings of government,â€ he said.
Enang also insisted that the executive was not attempting to muzzle the legislature, but asking lawmakers to act according to the constitution, adding that such allegations were unfounded.
â€œThe Executive is not muzzling the Legislature. It is only asking the legislature to act within its constitutional powers and not get into executive realm, otherwise the executive will continue to resist.
â€œWe have seen and read about three or four judgments in the last few weeks, saying the legislature does not have the powers to exercise most of the powers it has been exercising.
â€œFor instance, indicting someone or asking someone to answer to criminal charges before them, are the things the executive keeps resisting because they are contrary to the law.
â€œThese are the actions that some people misinterpret to mean that the executive is either not cooperating or it is muzzling the legislature. The executive is only asking the legislature to act within its powers and allow the judiciary to be the judge between them,â€ he explained.
The presidentâ€™s aide said as an important part of the society with ability to shape public opinion, the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA) should avoid the temptation of acting on unfounded information.
He advised NBA, lawyers and other Nigerians to always seek clarifications about government activities, saying the present administration was open to giving clarifications on its policies and activities.
On Buhariâ€™s ambition to run for a second term in office, Enang said his good records were speaking for him.
According to him, the presidentâ€™s record of achievement, integrity and love for country are bare for Nigerians to assess and do the needful in 2019.
Earlier, a leader of the group and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Paul Usoro, had said efforts were being made to reposition the NBA to enable it regain its lost glory.
Usoro, who disclosed that he was running for the position of the President in the forthcoming NBA election, said the bar was currently facing challenges.
â€œThere is a need for strategic plans to strengthen the Bar as an institution. The accounting system for instance, is weak and needs to be fixed.
â€œWhen we are able to fix the problems bedeviling the association, we will win the confidence of lawyers and when we speak on governance, we will be listened to. As a body with over 40 lawyers, we should be able to make an impact.â€
He noted that unless the NBA was repositioned, it would not be able to ensure the protection of rule of law, which was one of its primary roles.