Presidency Won’t Interfere in Election of 9th NASS Leadership, Says Enang

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Senator Ita Enang

By Deji Elumoye in Abuja

The Presidency yesterday declared that it had no special interest in the election of presiding officers for the 9th National Assembly billed for inauguration in June.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang, who disclosed this while addressing reporters in Abuja emphasised that President Muhammadu Buhari, would not interfere in the election of new presiding officers for the 9th National Assembly.

According to him,  the President believes so much in the rule of law, hence, he would allow each arm of government to perform its constitutional responsibility without interference on who and who occupies whatever position .

 Enang said the president would remain neutral and allow the elected lawmakers to carry out their constitutional responsibilities.

 He said, “The principle of President Muhammadu Buhari is that each arm of government should function according to what the constitution says which is that every person in government should do the right thing.

“He (Buhari) will not go beyond what the constitution allows him and every arm of government should stick to its constitutional responsibilities.”

He  urged the federal lawmakers to give priority to certain critical legislations like the 2019 Appropriation bill, New Minimum Wage Bill, the Medium Terms Expenditure Framework and the budget of the various government agencies.

According to Enang, “The budget of the 64 different federal government-owned agencies are still pending before the national parliament.

“Unless the budgets of the different agencies are considered and passed, we still have a lot to lose in terms of opportunities for employment in those ministries and some capital projects which would have increased government spending or the spending of the various agencies and parastatals.

“The executive is ready with all the system to come in and defend the budget. We have in advance, worked with the Committee on Appropriation to determine a time table for the defence of their budgets.

“We have informed all the ministers, heads of departments, agencies and the ministries to be on the alert so that immediately the bill is committed to the committee on appropriation, we will upon invitation, appear before them.”

Some senators-elect on the platform of the All Progressives Congress ( APC ) had on Thursday   told journalists  that the presidency and leadership of the party, should provide the direction for both chambers as regards leadership configuration  to avoid  leadership crisis that engulfed  the 8th Senate and by extension, the 8th National Assembly.

The  lawmakers specifically cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC leadership against working at cross-purposes to avoid another tussle that would alter the party’s zoning formula.